Ivanka Trump urged countries to do more on women's rights at G20, despite administration's contradictory record

The Asahi Shimbun via Getty ImagesCrown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia, Argentine President Mauricio Macri, Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Advisor to U.S. President Ivanka Trump, U.S. President Donald Trump and Indonesian President Joko Widodo attend the women’s empowerment event on the second day of the G20 summit on June 29, 2019 in Osaka, Japan.
  • White House adviser Ivanka Trump took center stage at a women’s empowerment event at the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan.
  • Speaking on a stage that only included two female world leaders, Trump touted her father’s record on pushing for women’s empowerment but insisted that “every nation…can and should do more.”
  • Trump has drawn harsh criticism for her past work as the White House’s face of women’s empowerment, as critics point to policies from her father’s administration that many say could restrict women’s rights in countries across the world.
  • Visit the Business Insider homepage for more stories.

White House adviser Ivanka Trump took center stage at a side event of the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan to call on world leaders to prioritise empowering women.

President Donald Trump’s eldest daughter sat alongside her father and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Special Event on Women’s Empowerment, where she insisted initiatives aimed at stimulating female economic empowerment should be placed “at the very heart of the G20 agenda.”

Though Trump was one of two women to speak at the meeting, there were only two female world leaders on the stage, outgoing British Prime Minister Theresa May and German Chancellor Angela Merkel,the Japan Times reports.

Trump pointed to developments under her father’s administration, including the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity initiative, but insisted that “every nation, including the United States, can and should do more.”

“If we propose bold solutions and challenge the limits of the past, we’ll empower women to lift their families out of poverty, to grow the economies in their countries and to deliver greater peace and prosperity to millions around the world,” she said.

Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, whom Trump has praised in the past for her track record of women’s rights causes, also addressed the group.

Trump has travelled extensively as the White House’s key face behind efforts for expanding women’s rights, including a trip to the Ivory Coast, after which she drew harsh blowback from critics who pointed to her father’s policy record that sometimes has contradicted the women’s rights she touts.

Read more: Ivanka Trump tweeted about visiting The Hague, and Twitter lit up with jokes and memes about her going to prison

Many critics have specifically pointed to issues like the Trump administration’s support for restrictive abortion policies that include cutting aid “to any foreign-based organisation that performs, promotes or offers information on abortion,” which restricts women’s reproductive rights in other countries.

Abe, who chairs the summit, had submitted a report to the intergovernmental network Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development that said “further progress” was seen in most G20-member economies toward meeting the group’s goal of reducing the gender gap in labour force participation by 25 per cent by 2025, Japan Today reports.

Though the report found there had been progress, stark differences remain among countries with vastly different rates of participation by gender in the workforce.

The meeting was held to emphasise that “gender equality and women’s empowerment are essential for achieving an inclusive and sustainable society and economic growth,” according to a joint statement from the leaders released ahead of the session.

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