From a retail tycoon to Amal Clooney: meet the Arab World's most powerful women

Published March 6th, 2015 - 09:27 GMT

A fighter pilot, a retail tycoon and a government minister all feature in a list by Arabian Business Magazine of the most powerful Arab women in the world.

Top of the list for the fifth year running is Sheikha Lubna Al Qassimi, the United Arab Emirate’s first ever female minister. She was promoted to Minister for International Development in 2013. “Sheikha Lubna has not only been an icon for women in the region, and a trailblazer for women’s rights, but also a vital part of the UAE’s evolution and growth in global prominence,” the magazine said.

The list has a new entry this year: Amal Clooney, the Lebanese British lawyer, activist and author who found fame last year when she married George Clooney in a Venice ceremony that garnered media attention around the world.

She is honoured by the magazine for her success as a human rights lawyer with clients such as Julian Assange, the Wikileaks founder, and Yulia Tymoshenko, the prime minister of Ukraine. 

Loujain Al Hathloul, at number three on the list, hit the headlines in December after she was arrested for driving across the border from the UAE to Saudi Arabia. She has now been freed from prison after reigniting the debate about women’s right to drive.

Arabian Business Magazine examined the influence of Arab women across the globe in all sectors, including business, academia, science and entertainment.

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