By Eroh K | Strong Female Leaders

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10 Countries with Female Leaders
Although some women believe that it is impossible to close the gender gap, there are certain areas where females are gaining ground. There are still disparages in pay and other unfair practices in the workplace, but some women have managed to defy the odds and make it to the top. Today, there are parts of the world that are headed by women. Here are 10 countries with female leaders.

1. Sheikh Hasina Wazed of Bangladesh
Sheikh Hasina Wazed has held the office of Prime Minister of Bangladesh for over a decade, which makes her the longest serving prime minister of the land. She condemns the violence of military rule and fights to provide human rights to all citizens of the country. As a testament to her courageous leadership, Wazed received the UNESCO Peace Tree Award.

2. Zuzana Caputova of Slovakia
On June 15, 2019, Zuzana Caputova took office as Slovakia's first woman president. She has always fought to protect the citizens of the country. In 2016, she headed a campaign that forced the closing of a waste dump that was poisoning the environment of her community. This was a contributing factor that led her to win the Goldman Award in Europe. After enjoying a successful career as a lawyer and civil society activist, she entered the political spectrum. Her win was a symbol of triumph for women, especially in a country that is far from progressive. She hopes that her victory acts as inspiration for females to pursue similar paths in her country and in other lands.

3. Tsai Ing-Wen of the Republic of China
Growing up in southern Taiwan, Tsai Ing-Wen was instilled with the beliefs that hard work and resilience bring success. Following this creed, she became the first female leader of her native country. Thanks to her legal background, she began working in government in the late 1980s. She worked heavily with the country's trade negotiation delegation and joined the Democratic Progressive Party in 2004. She was named one of the most influential females of 2019 and continues to work hard for the people of Taiwan.

4. Bidhya Devi Bhandari of Nepal
Known for her courage and her drive to defend women's rights, Bidhya Devi Bhandari became Nepal's first woman president in 2015. In this role, she promised to champion minorities and to promote female roles in the country. Before being elected as president, she worked as Nepal's defense minister. Despite being a female in a male-dominated political system, she is considered to be one of the most confident leaders in the country's history.

5. Angela Merkel of Germany
When mentioning countries with women leaders, it is essential to discuss Angela Merkel of Germany. She is considered to be one of the most powerful females in the world. Under her rule, Germany has enjoyed a prosperous economy. She had a very positive relationship with Barack Obama, and she was awarded the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011. To her credit, she is the longest-serving incumbent government leader in the European Union.

6. Jacinda Kate Laurell Arden of New Zealand
Jacinda Kate Laurell Arden is New Zealand's youngest prime minister. As part of the Labour party, her rise to power was swift. However, she gained political experience at a young age and worked in a number of important posts. Some of her most key learning experiences came during her service in the cabinet office of British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Her defense of women who bear children while in the workplace made her a feminist icon. In fact, she was New Zealand's first leader to take advantage of maternity leave. Due to her passion for moving the country in a progressive direction, she is often described as one of the most powerful women in the Southern Hemisphere.

7. Ana Brnabic of Serbia
In 2017, Ana Brnabic became Serbia's first female prime minister. She is openly gay and supports the LGBTQ community but does not want her identity to be tied only to her sexual orientation. Other platforms that she stands behind are modernization, education reform, and digitization. Besides her political career, she presides over the Council for Innovation-based Entrepreneurship and Information Technologies.

8. Erna Solberg of Norway
Erna Solberg has led the Conservative Party of Norway since 2004. She is on her second term as prime minister of the country. Throughout her service, she has been a champion of transatlantic values and securities. Also, she is a voice for women's rights. Over the next year, she hopes to increase Norway's support for women's reproductive health rights to the highest level in history.

9. Sahle-Work Zewde of Zimbabwe
Elected unanimously in 2018, Sahle-Work Zewde is the current president of Africa. A native of Ethiopia, Zewde focuses much of her efforts on women's issues and progressive reform. Before becoming president, she was the leader of the United Nations office in Kenya and served as Ethiopia's ambassador around the world. She has over 30 years of progressive experience at national, regional, and international levels, which is sure to keep her country moving in a positive direction.

10. Katrin Jakobsdottir of Iceland
When discussing countries with women leaders, it is essential to consider Iceland. Katrina Jakobsdottir is a new type of leader who comes from the Nordic left-wing party with support for socialism, environmentalism, feminism, and anti-militarism. At age 31, she became a part of Iceland's parliament and quickly became a favorite government official. She is a dedicated defender of women's rights and is pushing hard to pass the country's pay-equity law. She hopes to implement this standard within five years. Her other goals include overcoming austerity and achieving goals that target climate change.

Parting Words
Even though it may seem like males run the world, the above countries with female leaders prove that women successfully hold powerful government positions. These women are perfect examples of female strength and knowledge. Their leadership reinforces the notion that women can be strong political figures. If you are interested in following their paths, you should act with confidence, stand behind your beliefs, and make a positive impact on the world.


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