|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
6411th Meeting (AM & PM)
Security Council Supports ‘Taking Forward’ Indicators of Progress in Implementing
Landmark Text on Women, Peace, Security as Organization Marks Tenth Anniversary
United Nations to ‘Lead by Example’, Secretary-General Pledges
As Member States Weigh Mixed Record on Making Resolution 1325 (2000) Work
Marking the tenth anniversary of its landmark resolution on women and peace and security, the Security Council today expressed support for taking forward a set of indicators to measure progress in filling urgent gaps in the protection and empowerment of women.
In an open meeting that heard from more than 90 speakers, the Council noted with grave concern that, despite the normative framework and a wide range of activities spurred by the adoption of resolution 1325 (2000), women and girls were still ravaged by violence, and women’s participation at all stages of peace processes remained too low.
According to a presidential statement read out by Eriya Kategaya, First Deputy Prime Minister of Uganda, which holds the Council’s rotating presidency for October, the Council supported a set of indicators presented by the Secretary-General for monitoring the situation of women in all situations of conflict and all peacemaking efforts, as well as activities to implement resolution 1325 (2000) by national and international actors, particularly all parts of the United Nations system.
The Council underlined the need for timely and systematic reporting by all actors to make the indicators effective. Through the statement, it also expressed its intention to convene a high-level review in five years to assess progress made at the global, regional and national levels, renew commitments and address obstacles to the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000).
Opening the meeting via video message this morning, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted the wide-ranging activities, on the part of the United Nations and Member States, spurred by the resolution over the past 10 years, but also pointed out that the decade had been marred by widespread rape, physical abuse and other violations of the rights and physical security of women and children during and after conflict.
The recent horrifying mass rapes in the Democratic Republic of the Congo were a reminder of how much remained to be done, he said, adding that there was an overall lack of adequate methods for monitoring progress. For that reason, he called on the Council to endorse the comprehensive set of indicators set forth in his report, with a view to ending impunity and ensuring women’s participation in all stages of peace processes. Pledging that the United Nations would lead by example, he said: “Only by acting on our promises can we hope to create change.”
Mr. Ban’s statement was followed by that of Michelle Bachelet, Under-Secretary-General for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, newly appointed to head the new United Nations women’s agency, who said that the comprehensive set of indicators represented a highly practical new tool to support implementation of the women and peace and security agenda.
The Council then heard statements delivered by Alain Le Roy, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations; Hamidon Ali (Malaysia), President of the Economic and Social Council; and Thelma Awori of the Civil Society Advisory Group to the United Nations on Women, Peace and Security.
“It is time for action, not words,” Ms. Awori said in what she described as one very clear message from civil society. Women must no longer become the “shocking statistics of one horror or another, be it rape in the eastern Congo, acid thrown in the faces of girls walking to school in Afghanistan, or impunity for crimes against women in conflict-affected countries”. Their exclusion from important forums must be ended, she emphasized, welcoming the Secretary-General’s indicators and the creation of UN Women in that light.
Following those presentations, representatives of nearly half the United Nations membership took the floor to welcome the accomplishments of the past decade following the adoption of resolution 1325 (2000), and to urge intensified action to improve the situation of women on the ground, and their greater participation in peace activities. Many speakers pledged the full support of their respective countries for those efforts, with many also outlining national action plans. Most also stressed the need to end impunity for perpetrators of sexual violence in conflict and post-conflict situations.
Most speakers also welcomed the set of indicators developed by the Secretariat, although some said they needed careful consideration or improvement. India’s representative stressed that it was important to be aware of the difficulty of obtaining good data in conflict-ridden environments. Egypt’s representative warned against any attempt to apply the indicators beyond conflict and post-conflict situations, saying that would be an encroachment by the Council on the competence of the General Assembly, in addition to duplicating the work of UN Women and other international efforts.
Calling for the exercise of additional political will, many speakers found accomplishments on the ground over the past 10 years clearly disappointing, represented by the mass rapes in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. “We must now focus on action, implementation and accountability, so that 10 years from now we can look back with a sense of achievement and say that we have made a difference,” said Iceland’s representative.
Also speaking today were the Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs of Austria; the Secretary of State of the United States; the Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan; the Minister for International Cooperation of Canada; the Minister for Equal Opportunity of Italy; the Minister for Tourism and Culture of Gambia; the Minister for Gender and Development of Liberia; the Minister for the Interior of Finland; the Minister for Defence of Norway; the Deputy Minister for Social Development of South Africa; the Minister of State for Integration, Equality and Human Rights of Ireland; and the State Secretary for Foreign Affairs of Sweden.
Other speakers included the Director-General in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Slovenia; the Head of the National Commission to Prevent and Eradicate Violence against Women of Mexico; and a Senator from Rwanda.
Additional statements were made by representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina, France, Turkey, Nigeria, United Kingdom, Brazil, Gabon, Lebanon, Russian Federation, China, New Zealand, Portugal, Germany, Chile, Honduras, Denmark, Kazakhstan, Bangladesh, Liechtenstein, Estonia, Switzerland, Monaco, Viet Nam, Luxembourg, Jamaica, Argentina, Netherlands, Peru, Pakistan, Israel, Tunisia, Uruguay, Solomon Islands, El Salvador, Indonesia, Australia, Croatia, Afghanistan, United Republic of Tanzania, Nepal, Fiji, Papua New Guinea (on behalf of Pacific Small Island Developing States), Burundi, Philippines, Belgium, Colombia, Burkina Faso, Morocco, Namibia (on behalf of the Southern African Development Community), Ukraine, Hungary, Costa Rica (on behalf of the Human Security Network), Bahamas, Kenya, Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sierra Leone, Trinidad and Tobago, Botswana, Ghana and Armenia.
Permanent observers for the International Committee of the Red Cross, Palestine and the African Union also made statements, as did the Acting Head of the Delegation of the European Union and the Civilian Liaison Officer of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
The meeting began at 10:10 a.m., suspended at 2:10 p.m., reconvened at 3:25 p.m. and ended at 10:25 p.m.
The full text of presidential statement S/PRST/2010/22 reads as follows:
“The Security Council, meeting on the tenth anniversary of the adoption of its resolution 1325 (2000), reaffirms its commitment to the continuing and full implementation, in a mutually reinforcing manner, of resolutions 1325 (2000), 1612 (2005), 1674 (2006), 1820 (2008), 1882 (2009), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009), 1894 (2009) and all relevant statements of its Presidents.
“The Security Council welcomesthe report of the Secretary-General on Women and Peace and Security (S/2010/498), and the analysis it contains on progress in implementing resolution 1325 (2000).
“The Security Council welcomes General Assembly resolution A/64/289 establishing the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) that will be fully operational in January 2011. The Council invites UN Women to regularly contribute to its work on women and peace and security and notes the valuable role it will play in supporting women’s roles in peacebuilding and the prevention of sexual violence in conflict, including through coordination and coherence in policy and programming for women and girls. It welcomes the appointment of Ms. Michele Bachelet as its head.
“The Security Council reiterates its strong condemnation of all violations of applicable international law committed against women and girls in situations of armed conflict and post-conflict situations, including rape, other forms of sexual and gender-based violence and killing and maiming that contravene international law. The Council urges the complete cessation by all parties of such acts with immediate effect and also urges Member States to bring to justice those responsible for crimes of this nature. Their efforts to combat impunity must be matched with assistance and redress to victims. In this regard, it reiterates its support for the mandates of the Special Representatives of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict and for Children and Armed Conflict and encourages them to continue to ensure full transparency, cooperation and coordination of their efforts.
“The Security Council notes that the fight against impunity for the most serious crimes of international concern committed against women and girls has been strengthened through the work of the International Criminal Court, ad hoc and mixed tribunals, as well as specialized chambers in national tribunals and takes note of the stocktaking of international criminal justice undertaken by the first Review Conference of the Rome Statute held in Kampala, Uganda, from 31 May to 11 June 2010. The Council intends to enhance its efforts to fight impunity and uphold accountability for serious crimes against women and girls with appropriate means and draws attention to the full range of justice and reconciliation mechanisms to be considered, including national, international and mixed criminal courts and tribunals, truth and reconciliation commissions as well as national reparation programs for victims, institutional reforms and traditional dispute resolution mechanisms.
“The Security Council recognizes the continued challenges and welcomesthe many efforts to implement resolution 1325 (2000) detailed in the Secretary-General’s report, in particular positive examples of efforts to engage withwomen’s civil society groups in conflict resolution and peacebuilding, and to protect women and girls from sexual and gender-based violence.
“The Security Council notes with grave concern that women and girls are disproportionately affected by conflict, and that women’s participation at all stages of peace processes and in the implementation of peace accords remains too low, despite the vital role of women in the prevention and resolution of conflicts and in rebuilding their societies. The Council recognizes the need to facilitate the full and effective participation of women in these areas and stresses that the full and effective participation of women is very important for sustainability of peace processes.
“The Security Council welcomes the efforts of Member States to implement its resolution 1325 (2000) at the national level, including the increase in the number of States that have formulated or revised national action plans and strategies, and encourages Member States to continue to pursue such implementation.
“The Security Council welcomes the concrete commitments made by a number of Member States at the present ministerial open debate on 26 October 2010 to increase their efforts to implement its resolution 1325 (2000) and invites those Member States and any other Member States that wish to do so to regularly review implementation of this resolution and to report to the Security Council on progress made as appropriate.
“The Security Council supports taking forward, including by relevant United Nations entities, the set of indicators contained in the report of the Secretary General (S/2010/498) for use as an initial framework to track implementation of its resolution 1325 in situations of armed conflict and post-conflict and other situations relevant to the implementation of resolution 1325, as appropriate, and taking into account the specificity of each country.
“The Security Council recognizes the need for consistent implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) in its own work and for monitoring progress in implementation. In this regard the Security Council underlines the need for timely and systematic reporting on women and peace and security issues and urges the Secretary-General to ensure thatcountry-specific and relevant thematic issues reports and briefings, provide information on women and peace and security issues and on the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) using this set of indicators, as appropriate.
“The Security Council encourages Member States to take into account the set of indicators contained in the annex of the report of the Secretary-General on Women and Peace and Security (S/2010/498), as appropriate, in implementing Security Council resolution 1325 (2000) and subsequent resolutions on women and peace and security.
“The Security Council reiterates its demand to all parties to armed conflict to immediately and completely cease all forms of violence against women and girls, including acts of sexual violence.
“The Security Council encourages Member States to deploy greater numbers of female military and police personnel to United Nations peacekeeping operations, and to provide all military and police personnel with adequate training to carry out their responsibilities. The Council requests the Secretary-General to continue and strengthen efforts to implement the policy of zero tolerance on sexual exploitation and abuse by United Nations peacekeeping and humanitarian personnel. The Council requests the Secretary-General to continue to provide and deploy guidance on addressing sexual violence for pre-deployment and inductive training of military and police personnel, and to assist missions in developing situation-specific procedures to address sexual violence at the field level and to ensure that technical support is provided to troop- and police-contributing countries in order to include guidance for military and police personnel on addressing sexual violence in pre-deployment and induction training. The Security Council welcomes the work of gender and women protection advisers appointed to peacekeeping missions. The Council looks forward to considering the annual report of the Secretary General on the implementation of its resolution 1820 (2008).
“The Security Council requests the Secretary-General to continue to submit an annual report to it on the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). The Council further requests the Secretary-General to propose in his next annual report a strategic framework to guide the United Nations implementation of the resolution in the next decade, which includes targets and indicators and takes account of relevant processes within the Secretariat. In this context, the Council requests the Secretary-General to include recommendations for policy and institutional reforms in the United Nations that will facilitate improved response by the Organization to women and peace and security issues.
“The Security Council reiterates its request to Member States, international, regional and subregional organizations to take measures to increase the participation of women in conflict prevention, conflict resolution and peacebuilding, including in decision-making roles in post-conflict governance institutions, appointed and elected. The Council urges the Secretary-General to appoint more women as mediators and special representatives and envoys to pursue good offices on his behalf.
“The Security Council expresses its intention to convene a high-level review in five years to assess progress at the global, regional and national levels in implementing resolution 1325 (2000), renew commitments and address obstacles and constraints that have emerged in the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000).”
The Security Council had before it the Secretary-General’s report on women and peace and security (document S/2010/498), which says that in the ten years since the adoption of the groundbreaking resolution 1325 (2000) on the topic, the United Nations system, Member States, civil society and other actors have made notable efforts implementing a large number of activities in a broad range of areas.
The report states that the latest review of progress shows that there is a growing participation of women in decision-making roles and in peacekeeping operations, an increase in appointments of women as Special Representatives and Deputy Special Representatives of the Secretary-General, an increasing importance of gender as a feature of mission planning, reporting and post-conflict planning, as well as an increased focus on addressing sexual violence in conflict. Civil society organizations, in particular, have played a key role in keeping critical issues on the development agenda and providing direct support to women peacemakers in conflict areas.
However, it says, continued attention and support is required to counter stereotypes and ensure the meaningful participation of women at all stages of the peace processes and the integration of gender perspective into justice and security sector reform, disarmament, reintegration processes and economic recovery. In addition, progress has not always been consistent. Significant achievements under the resolution remain difficult to quantify, and a single coherent and coordinated approach, guided by a clear framework with concrete and specific goals and targets, and supported by a meaningful set of indicators to track progress was needed.
For that reason, the report says, during its open debate in 2009 the Council adopted resolution 1889 (2009) calling for the development of indicators to measure progress on the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). In response, the Secretary-General submitted a report that resulted from consultations between relevant agencies, as well with Member States and civil society, and proposed 26 indicators to track the implementation of the resolution.
During its debate on the topic on 27 April 2010, the Council took note of the indicators contained in the report and requested that they be developed further, taking into account the view of broader stakeholders, and matched with a programme of work containing roles and responsibilities vis-à-vis the indicators within the United Nations system and a timeframe to make the indicators operational.
The resulting indicators, as detailed in the Annex of the report, address the gender-responsive systems to monitor, report and respond to violations of women’s and girls’ human rights; the degree to which all actors in a conflict zone are responsive to and held accountable for violations of those rights; and the consideration of women’s and girls’ needs in early warning monitoring systems.
Among other fields, the indicators also cover the inclusion of women’s and girls’ interests in decision-making processes related to conflict resolution; participation of women in international missions for peace and security, peace negotiations, national and local governance and human rights issues; as well as the actual security of women and girls on the ground. Responsibility for providing data inputs are distributed to United Nations entities and Member States.
In the next phase of its work on the question of women and peace and security, the Secretary-General says, the Council may wish to endorse the indicators contained in the present report for use in a comprehensive framework along with a unified set of goals and time-bound targets. It could also adopt and begin to use those indicators as a basis for the Council’s current work, and it could urge Member States to use them as appropriate in their own efforts to implement the resolution.
In addition to its presentation of the indicators as described above, the report presents an extensive overview of activities so far towards implementing resolution 1325 (2000) by the Security Council, Member States, civil society and the United Nations system. As in the overall implementation of the resolution, the Secretary-General says, a framework to guide implementation and ensure accountability must be considered with utmost urgency in regard to United Nations efforts.
A few goals and targets for each area, with associated indicators, could form the basis for an invigorated and more coherent approach to implementing resolution 1325 (2000) in the next decade, he concludes.
Council President ERIYA KATEGAYA, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for East African Community Affairs of Uganda, said that despite the advancements made under resolution 1325 (2000), conflict still had a devastating impact on women and girls. It was therefore necessary to develop strong, time-bound and measurable commitments to action. His Government had made empowerment of women a priority. Through varied initiatives, women’s participation at all levels had been greatly enhanced, and in the next five years more initiatives would fight gender-based violence and increase women’s participation in development, as well as in security institutions. Women had an important role to play in all areas of advancement of the country.
BAN KI-MOON, Secretary-General of the United Nations, said that the landmark adoption of resolution 1325 (2000) opened the way for incorporating gender perspectives into all work to restore, keep and build peace, spurring much activity on the part of the United Nations and Member States.
However, the past decade was also marred by widespread rape, physical abuse, extortion and other violations of the rights and physical security of women and children during and after conflict, with the latest reminder being the recent horrifying mass rapes in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Overall, there was a lack of adequate methods for monitoring progress. For that reason, he called on the Council to endorse the comprehensive set of indicators developed in his recent reports.
The indicators would be an important part of the “toolkit”, he said, but they were just a beginning. To end sexual violence in conflict, those responsible must be held to account, whether the crimes were committed by State or non-State parties, to end impunity. Women’s participation in the justice and security sectors must be supported. In addition, stereotypes must be eliminated and women’s meaningful participation at all stages of peace processes and decision-making must be ensured.
He was determined, he said, for the United Nations system to lead by example, and he noted that he had appointed eleven women Special Representatives or Deputy Special Representatives of the Secretary-General to peacekeeping operations and special political missions, and also that heads of missions consulted with women’s organizations in special Open Day meetings. He pledged to continue to push for full accountability for the conduct of peacekeepers in the field. In all those areas, he welcomed continued support from the Council. “Only by acting on our promises can we hope to create change,” he said.
MICHELLE BACHELET, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), in her first statement to the Council since her appointment last month, said the report presented a comprehensive overview of progress made, as well as obstacles encountered, in the first decade of implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). It also highlighted progress achieved in implementing the 2008-2009 System Wide Action Plan for resolution 1325 (2000), as well as an update on further development of the set of indicators continued in the Secretary-General’s report of April (S/2020/173). The report’s recommendations would provide the Council with tools to ensure accelerated implementation. “I am confident that with strong Council leadership, Member States’ determination, civil society engagement and United Nations commitment and assistance, we will together ensure coherent implementation of the important work on women, peace and security.”
She said the report presented a mixed picture. United Nations system entities had invested in training, development of policies, action plans and guidelines and programming in order to ensure women’s access to resources, justice and participation in decision-making. Peacekeeping missions had become more effective in engaging women in peacebuilding. Giving an overview of activities, she said that in a number of post-conflict countries, there had been a dramatic increase in the number of women in national politics, partly because of electoral quotas. Civil society had played a key role in advocating accountability in the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). At the national level, there had been important examples of women’s peace activism.
The Council itself had continued to play an active part, she said, with the role of women in peace and security now more clearly integrated into the Council’s deliberations. It had brought sharper attention to the issues of sexual violence through resolutions 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009) and 1889 (2009). A Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Armed Conflict had been appointed. The call for indicators to monitor the implementation of the resolution was a bold and important step.
Despite those activities, she continued, there were a number of “sobering messages” that called for concerted and urgent action. Implementation activities had lacked a clear direction or time-bound goals and targets. Because of design, implementation and resource limitations, the System-wide Action Plan, designed to bring greater coherence to United Nations system implementation efforts, fell short of its goals.
She recommended that the Council might wish to consider a range of initiatives to ensure that the coming years would see more determined and effective implementation. The report recommended the development of a single comprehensive framework consisting of an agreed set of goals, targets and indicators to guide the implementation of the resolution in the next decade. The Council could convene a review or summit at the ministerial level every five years to assess progress. The comprehensive set of indicators represented a highly practical new tool to support implementation of the women and peace and security agenda. “I strongly urge the Council to agree to move forward on the indicators […] and begin to use them as a basis for the Council’s review, analysis and intervention on issues related to women and peace and security at both the global and country levels,” she said.
Actions such as the horrific mass rapes in the eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo could not be allowed to continue with impunity. That underlined the “desperate urgency” of accelerating the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) to strengthen the capacity of Member States to resolve conflicts and build security and justice systems that protected the human rights of all. The Council might wish to instruct that those who abused women and girls and violated their human rights in conflict and post-conflict situations must be brought to justice in accordance with national laws, international law and international humanitarian law; the Council must remain vigilant and relentless in bringing pressure to bear on perpetrators and their supporters.
She continued, “What is needed now is determined leadership — by all of us working together.” UN Women would support efforts to improve the environment for women during and after conflict, to engage women in conflict prevention, and to ensure that peacebuilding processes were guided by women’s perspectives and addressed their needs. She added, “Let us make this the beginning of a new decade in which women can put their stamp on conflict resolution so that throughout the world we can have more effective peace making and more sustainable peacebuilding.”
ALAIN LE ROY, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, said that in recent months, the Departments of Peacekeeping Operations and Field Support had jointly launched a process to review implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), which had confirmed a number of important lessons. It had shown how the leadership of peacekeeping missions could use their good offices to facilitate women’s participation in political processes. Experience in the Democratic Republic of the Congo showed that cultivating partnerships with women in post-conflict countries greatly enhanced knowledge and understanding of the operational environment and thus the ability to protect women and girls from sexual violence.
From Liberia and Haiti it was learned that female peacekeepers could effectively reach out to all members of the local population. Missions had benefited from the appointment of gender advisers. The development of guidelines and training tools for peacekeeping had supported gender mainstreaming in peacekeeping missions and in pre-deployment planning. “We have further learned that implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) requires financial support and too often this is an afterthought.” Unfortunately, misconduct on the part of peacekeepers undermined the credibility and legitimacy of operations. “Our collective responses must demonstrate our unwavering commitment to upholding the respect and rights of women”, he said.
He said that drawing on lessons and emerging trends, there were five key elements to advance the future strategy: the necessary financing must be in place to support implementation of resolution 1325 (2000); focus must be on building capacities of women to build and sustain peace in their own countries; more must be invested in facilitating women’s participation in political processes; close engagement with troop and police contributing countries was necessary to prepare military and police personnel for implementation of resolution 1325 (2000); during the early post-conflict phase, peacekeeping missions would provide leadership and coordination of an integrated United Nations response; and the Departments would actively support the strengthening of accountability and monitoring mechanisms for implementation of the resolution.
He concluded, “Our greatest indicator of success must, however, remain the extent to which our collective energies contribute to building a sustainable, nationally-owned platform from which local women, working with men, can themselves define, shape and influence the course of peace in their countries.”
HAMIDON ALI, President of the United Nations Economic and Social Council, said that gender equality and empowerment of women were cross-cutting issues for all development policies and for all international policies. The Economic and Social Council reviewed annually how the United Nations system mainstreamed gender perspectives in its activities. It had prompted a comprehensive approach to peace, stability and development. Its discussions on the transition from relief to development had been based on the demonstrated need to integrate relief, rehabilitation, reconstruction and development into a continuum that increased coherence of international support. Peacebuilding was an additional dimension of international efforts that now could be added to that approach.
He said that violence against women in conflict and post-conflict situations was a challenge both to development and to security, and affected not only the health and safety of women, but also the political, economic and social stability of their nations. The General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council with its Commission on the Status of Women, and the Peacebuilding Commission all had a role to play in fostering international action to eliminate that scourge. He therefore suggested a sharing of tasks among those bodies. The Economic and Social Council could ensure follow-up and monitoring of the indicators developed by its Statistical Commission on violence against women.
The Economic and Social Council, he said, would focus on the further mainstreaming of the gender dimension in the work of the system at large, and it would address the programmatic aspect of the work of UN Women. The specific constituency, institutional weight and networks of the Council — which he called its “convening power” — would be used for a joint event with the Peacebuilding Commission in order to review the status of women in peacebuilding settings. “By maintaining close dialogue among our different bodies,” he said, “we can strengthen the impact of the United Nations voice in our common areas of work.”
THELMA AWORI, of the Civil Society Advisory Group to the United Nations on Women, Peace and Security, gave what she called one very clear message from civil society: “It is time for action, not words!” She pointed out that women continued to pay a heavy price in both conflicts and post-conflict situations all around the world, becoming the “shocking statistics of one horror or another, be it rape in the eastern Congo, acid thrown in the faces of girls walking to school in Afghanistan, or impunity for crimes against women in conflict-affected countries”.
Women were still, she said, excluded from many of the forums that would determine their future, which she said was costly not only for women but also to the sustainability of peace. Resolution 1325 (2000) provided a valuable road map, and that road map must be followed. Welcoming the indicators provided by the Secretariat and the creation of UN Women, she said that today the Council could commit itself to laying out good practice on women, peace and security in all of its daily work. “We cannot wait another ten years for action,” she said.
She urged the Council, in addition, to endorse the seven-point action plan included in the report, including the engagement of mediators for women. UN Women must be supported by all actors, and accountability must be assured. She said that civil society had been at the forefront of all such efforts, bringing awareness to the public on the scope and depth of the problem. Civil society, she pledged, would continue to work to empower women in war-affected regions and work on the ground with policymakers to bring about global peace and human security.
She urged Member States to commit to powerful and concrete steps to fully implement the resolution and urged Council Members to be bold in meeting the challenge. The past ten years should be seen as years of preparation, of building awareness and putting in place the structures and the tools. The second decade of resolution 1325 (2000) must be the “Decade of Action”, she concluded.
MICHAEL SPINDELEGGER, Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs, Austria, said a strong normative framework and a variety of tools had been developed for progress in women and peace and security, but implementation had been slow and uneven. To redress that situation, the international community must be ready to use all tools and translate words into practice in a consistent manner, ensuring that those who disregarded the Council’s decisions were held accountable. The comprehensive set of indicators that received the Council’s support today would close important gaps and guide action in the future. All Member States should use them in relation to their own national action plans, so that a truly global picture of implementation of the resolution could be formulated.
As the next step, timely information must be provided on all the indicators, hoping that the Council would in the future also receive briefings on situations in which women were threatened, stressing that early warning and prevention was still by far the best protection. In addition, he said, the issue must be mainstreamed throughout the Council’s work. Surveying Austria’s extensive work to implement the resolution at the national and international level, including efforts in multilateral development and peacekeeping, he reiterated his hope that the commitments to action made today would not be “a onetime effort limited to the 10 year anniversary”. He pledged his country’s readiness to follow-up on its commitments, and to use this anniversary to spur further action and to review its progress annually.
HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON, Secretary of State, United States, welcomed the work of leaders in the United Nations and civil society in the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). The only way to reduce conflict and eliminate rape as a weapon of war was to build on the contributions of everyone in peacemaking, peacekeeping and peacebuilding, she said. The inclusion of women in all efforts was not just polite, it was an imperative to progress in all areas. The talents of half the population could not be ignored. She said the United States was putting women front and centre in all efforts, noting its insistence on women’s rights and participation in Afghanistan. In Namibia, it had trained peacekeepers deployed in Chad on their obligations and skills to protect women’s rights.
Surveying other efforts of the United States, she said that in the future every project would prioritize impact on women, but cooperation between the entire international community was needed for the promise of resolution 1325 (2000) to come to fruition. The recent rapes in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo tragically showed the need for stepping up such efforts and ending impunity. Her country was providing funds for the recovery of survivors and pursuing other efforts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but current efforts were certainly not enough. She described how the $44 million in her country’s funding for women’s rights in Afghanistan was to be used. She said the United States would adopt the indicators proposed in the Secretary-General’s report, to encourage accountability. She stressed that the focus must be on improving lives in the near future.
MAKIKO KIKUTA, Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, affirming the essence of Council resolution 1325 (2000), said peace could not be achieved without the participation of women, yet women and children remained the principal victims of every conflict. The international community must comprehensively address prevention, participation, protection and recovery, she said, adding that doing so would, among other things, enable identification of what was needed to make the objectives of the resolution a reality. She urged the formulation of a country-specific strategy with a gender perspective when implementing peacebuilding activities.
The establishment of UN Women and the appointment of Michelle Bachelet offered the possibility to provide leadership in the resolution’s actualization, she said, adding that her country had presented its candidacy for membership on the gender entity’s first Executive Board. In a national capacity, Japan was supporting implementation of the resolution through its “Initiative on Gender and Development”, which stipulated that official development assistance (ODA) for countries in conflict or post-conflict situations must take into account the needs of women and the vulnerable. Japan had also sent female Self-Defence Force personnel to train peacekeepers in Africa, accepted women from Timor-Leste for training in its National Defence Academy, and provided training to female police officers in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
LAURA CARRERA LUGO, Head of the National Commission to Prevent and Eradicate Violence against Women, Mexico, said that through adoption of resolution 1325 (2000), the Council had taken an important step in incorporating the issue of women and security into its agenda, since women were part of the resolution to conflict. If there was not an effective tool to achieve that, inequality would persist and the solution to conflicts would be delayed. The international community had developed a robust framework. The resolution’s full implementation was the challenge. Reiterating the importance of having a comprehensive framework for compliance with international law, she said lasting peace could not be achieved without guaranteeing the delivery of justice.
She said it was crucial that the Council adopt a systematic gender approach in its activities and resolutions, as a central element to international peace and security rather than as something marginal. Clear and consistent decisions were necessary, as well as complementary cooperation with other United Nations bodies and with regional organizations. Strengthening its relationship with civil society was also necessary. The set of indicators could be used as a diagnostic tool and a road map. The Council must integrate those indicators in its own work. She then went on to describe national efforts and actions by Mexico to implement the resolution and to protect women.
MIRSADA COLAKOVIC (Bosnia and Herzegovina) said the establishment of UN Women as well as the appointment of its head and that of the Special Representative for Sexual Violence in Conflict were important recent developments to ensure that the United Nations was working to match its commitments to gender equality with the necessary leadership, resources and expertise. Contemporary conflicts created situations in which women and children were most affected by deterioration living conditions and fundamental rights.
The deprivation of rights often went hand-in-hand with violence, he said, stressing that rape as a weapon of war was unacceptable. Regrettably, sexual and gender-based violence often continued after peace deals were reached due to insufficient investment in protection and prevention strategies or weak security and justice institutions. Bosnia and Herzegovina had been among the first countries in the Western Balkans to adopt a National Action Plan for the implementation of resolution 1325 (2010), and had also adopted a Gender Action Plan. Both linked national and international activities in addressing a broader concept of women, peace and security, and translating them into genuine political commitments, he said.
GÉRARD ARAUD (France), aligning himself with the statement to be made by the European Union, said that the tenth anniversary of the resolution should be a departure point for further efforts from the international community. Protection of women from violence, ensuring their basic rights, involvement of women in peace processes, raising awareness for women’s rights and political and diplomatic action were France’s priorities, particularly within the European Union and the Security Council. The United Nations should prioritize the fight against sexual violence, using progress indicators and focusing on conflict resolution. He supported the use of women conflict advisers. France would integrate systematically the perspective of the resolution in all peacekeeping activities.
He called on the Council to remain vigilant in ending impunity. He said that the indicators should be used for the purpose of early warning and called on the Secretary-General to make them operational them as soon as possible. He welcomed progress made in the involvement of women in conflict resolution and the establishment of UN Women, commenting that the entire United Nations system must mobilize itself to free women from the scourge of war.
ERTUĞRUL APAKAN (Turkey) said his country was committed to the full implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), welcoming progress that had been made in the past 10 years, including the strong understanding of the need for women’s protection and empowerment. He commended all those who had been working tirelessly in that effort, including civil society. However, he noted that urgent action was still needed in many areas. Efforts against impunity must be increased, with targeted measures applied to perpetrators of sexual violence.
In all areas, ad hoc approaches should be replaced by systemic ones, with relevant resolutions integrated into the work of the Council. The indicators proposed by the Secretary-General were useful in that context, as was the emergence of UN Women. Achieving the Millennium Development Goals, particularly number three, would reinforce other United Nations efforts. He underlined his country’s commitment to the human rights of women all around the world, and pledged its continued support to the implementation of resolutions on women, peace and security.
U. JOY OGWU ( Nigeria) said the Secretary-General’s reports showed how the situation of women at every stage of the conflict cycle could be improved. Although major challenges remained in implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), modest progress achieved should be celebrated. The Council had devoted more attention to the issue of women peace and security. Several appointments had placed women at the top of the global agenda. Collective efforts on resolution 1325 (2000) had been significant. Describing her country’s efforts, she said it could be summed up in four words: empower; prevent; protect; and promote. In its military and policing strategies women were adequately represented as well as in the judicial and political system. Female peacekeepers deployed in Nigeria’s peacekeeping contributions had an advantage when dealing with such issues as gender violence.
She said that in spite of hard work and the often expressed commitment of the international community, serious challenges remained. Women were underrepresented in conflict prevention and solution efforts, an omission which had contributed to the culture of impunity, among other things. The Secretary-General’s recommendations could enhance coordination and effectiveness of the United Nations system. There was a need for further development of data collectors so that the set of indicators could be truly applied. She urged the Council to take forward the concept of indicators and she encouraged countries that had not yet done so to develop and deploy their national action plans for implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) and to infuse gender perspectives in addressing all conflict cycles.
MARK LYALL GRANT ( United Kingdom) said the Council had passed many important resolutions, but few had changed the way in which the international community looked at conflict as resolution 1325 (2000) had done. It had opened the Council’s eyes to the fact that women were the principal victims of conflict, but also were part of the solution, and that women must be actively involved in rebuilding a society in which their rights were guaranteed. He said 22 Member States had adopted national action plans, and the integration of gender perspectives in development and defence policies was growing. There was a need to build awareness of, and strengthen implementation of, resolution 1325 (2000) on the ground.
He said the Council must focus on three main challenges. There was still a lack of effective measures to understand the problems and monitoring the impact of its work. The Secretary-General’s set of indicators should therefore be operationalized. Secondly, women remained underrepresented in peace negotiations, and there was therefore a need to ensure that women were included in conflict resolution and post-conflict peacebuilding as a matter of course. Finally, it must be ensured that the entire international community took responsibility for implementing resolution 1325 (2000). That was a global challenge that required action by all Member States.
MARIA LUIZA RIBEIRO VIOTTI (Brazil) noted the many achievements under resolution 1325 (2000), but also that much remained to be done, although she said it was significant that there was now a much better understanding of the challenges. She said the indicators proposed by the Secretary-General were an important tool, and she noted with appreciation the wide-ranging consultations undertaken in their preparation. Indicators were not enough, however, and concrete changes must be made through action.
In that effort, she added, Governments must be more engaged through national plans that involved a broad range of actors, including civil society, and with adequate funding. Women must be politically and economically empowered by representation at all levels of decision-making and access to economic opportunities. In her own country, she said, there had been compelling evidence that when women were empowered, they could act to change the lives of those around them. In the “Bolsa Familia” programme, which had lifted millions out of poverty, women were the preferred recipients of transfers. Brazil was using that experience to inform its international cooperation, particularly in Haiti.
EMMANUEL ISSOZE-NGONDET (Gabon) said that resolution 1325 (2000) and subsequent related resolutions had made women, peace and security an integral part of the Council’s agenda. Many national action plans had been adopted. Gabon had taken measures to ensure that women could take on senior responsibilities in many areas, including the Ministry of Defence. He affirmed the readiness of Gabon to work with the United Nations in strengthening efforts in women’s empowerment.
Those responsible for heinous crimes against women and children must be brought to justice. For that purpose, a thorough respect for international law must be inculcated in conflict areas and peacekeeping missions must be better equipped to ensure that. With regard to indicators, he said the Secretary-General should continue his consultations with Member States, noting that the indicators would not be operational for two years. In conclusion, he welcomed the emergence of UN Women and affirmed the importance of women’s participation in ending conflict.
NAWAF SALAM (Lebanon) said that over the last decade, the United Nations system, Member States and civil society had made significant efforts to implement resolution 1325 (2000) through a wide spectrum of measures and initiatives. Progress had been made in increasing awareness of the threat that sexual violence constituted to peace and security and of the cost of excluding women from the peace processes.
However, despite those important efforts, the conditions that women and girls faced in situations of armed conflict continued to be abhorrent, and effective methods for monitoring the impact of the measures already in place to protect them were lacking. Rape continued to be used as a weapon of war, as evidenced by the event of July 2010 in the eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
As they cared for their families and raised their children, she said, women played a crucial role in restoring the fabric of society and overcoming war wounds, yet their own wounds were still not being properly remedied. Women were crucial partners in shoring up three of the pillars of long-lasting peace — economic recovery, social cohesion and political legitimacy. More efforts were needed to raise awareness among men and sensitize them to the importance of safeguarding women’s rights for a durable peace and the well-being of society as a whole. Additionally, because of a financing shortfall in meeting women’s needs in post-conflict recovery plans, donors could play a constructive role in that regard by supporting women’s and girls’ education.
VITALY CHURKIN ( Russian Federation) said that resolution 1325 (2000) had become an effective reference point in enhancing the role of women in conflict and post-conflict situations. However, women and children continued to be victims, including of terrorist acts. He said he was concerned about cases of women and girls being killed and maimed through the indiscriminate and excessive use of force, crimes that often went unpunished. The issue of women, peace and security should be dealt with not only by the Council, but also by the Assembly, the Human Rights Council and the Commission on the Status of Women. Leaving the matter exclusively to the Council would create imbalances and undermine effective implementation of resolution 1325 (2000).
He said the set of indicators must still be verified against reality and practice. After evaluation of their effectiveness by the United Nations system, the Council could return to them. The Council and the whole United Nations system must pay greater attention to enhancing gender balance in peacekeeping and in mission mandates, taking into account the uniqueness of every situation.
WANG MIN ( China) said resolution 1325 (2000) had focused the attention of the international community on the issue of women in conflict, and constituted a framework for cooperation by the international community to address the issue. In order to better protect women, efforts must be made to remove the root causes of conflict, a process which required the participation of women. The rights of women would depend on the international community’s efforts in conflict prevention and mediation.
He stressed that Governments in conflict or post-conflict situations bore the primary responsibility for the protection of women. The international community could provide help in, among other things, promoting security sector reform and rule of law. More women should be appointed to participate in mediation and prevention efforts. He condemned the use of sexual violence as a tool of war, and stressed the need to provide assistance to its victims. Ensuring participation of women in conflict resolution and reconstruction would contribute to social stability and consolidation of peace. The relevant United Nations organs should have a division of labour to address the question of women and peace and security in order to achieve full synergy.
BEVERLEY ODA, Minister of International Cooperation, Canada, spoke on behalf of the Group of Friends of Women, Peace and Security, an informal network of more than 40 interested Member States. The Group, she said, welcomed the recommendations and set of indicators outlined in the Secretary-General’s report, and called on the Council to endorse and put those indicators into use.
Speaking in her national capacity, she said she looked forward to the Council’s review of data collected by the indicators in the future, in the interest of developing clearer peacekeeping mandates and better training for peacekeepers. She stressed that peace processes must benefit from the direct participation of women at all levels, that mediators must exhibit better understanding of gender issues and agreements must provide remedies for the plight of women.
Supporting many United Nations efforts on the topic, she said the concerns of women must also be integrated across the work of the Peacebuilding Commission, and she called on the United Nations system to ensure that the efforts of Special Representative of the Secretary-General Margot Wallström were adequately funded. She also called on States to investigate and prosecute crimes of sexual violence and to cooperate with international prosecutions where necessary. Referring to Canada’s national action plan on implementing resolution 1325 (2000), she pointed, in particular, to codes of conduct in humanitarian assistance, in training modules on protection and in the identification of specialists.
MARIA ROSARIA CARFAGNA, Minister for Equal Opportunities, Italy, welcomed the Council’s decision to take forward the set of indictors as a first step. She now called on the Council to ensure swift operationalization. She said the most effective tool to strengthen implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) lay in the adoption of national action plans, adding that her country’s draft national action plan was in an advanced stage. Its main objective was to strengthen the participation of women in peacekeeping missions and in their decision-making bodies. Describing national experience, she said adopting a gender perspective for all peacebuilding activities was another priority of the action plan.
Highlighting some aspects of the plan, she stressed the importance of adopting a gender-oriented approach to all peacebuilding operations, conducting gender-sensitive surveys, collecting statistics with gender-disaggregated data and carrying out specific studies on other discriminatory factors. The plan also focused on the protection of human rights, particularly women’s rights. She said the staff of peacekeeping missions should be trained to deal with such issues as: equal opportunities; humanitarian international law; resolution 1325 (2000); and human rights, with particular reference to issues relating to gender violence, sexual violence and human trafficking. Another priority was cooperation with civil society and non-governmental organizations.
FATOU MASS JOBE-NJIE, Minister of Tourism and Culture, Gambia, said the specific Council resolutions on women, peace and security had tried to ensure the active participation of women in the peace process as well as in prevention and protection efforts, including gender-based violence and the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war. They had also called for the promotion of women’s and girls’ rights during and after conflicts, and for the elevation of women to leadership positions. Describing national efforts and successes, she said that in pursuing those objectives, her Government had embarked on a series of interventions, guided by the slogan “from commitment to action”, and was in the process of finalizing its national action plan.
She said there was still a low level of awareness on the content of resolution 1325 (2000), which explained why her country had yet to attain the 50 per cent involvement of women in peacebuilding and negotiation processes. She urged Governments to sustain the political will and momentum to give women empowerment and to establish or strengthen gender-responsive budgeting. Donor coordination should be enhanced to fund implementation of national action plans. Member States should conduct aggressive awareness raising campaigns. Standardized and functional coordination mechanisms should be put in place to collect data in Member States, and also on the subregional level.
VABAH GAYFLOR, Minister of Gender and Development, Liberia, said she welcomed the recognition of the important role of women in all areas of responsibility. She said that her country had made efforts that had had impact in the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), particularly through a national action plan that was constructed on the pillars of protection, prevention, participation, empowerment and promotion. It was closely aligned with Liberia’s poverty reduction strategy. On the extensive efforts taken under that action plan, she said harmonization of all the instruments was still a challenge, along with the recruitment, training and retaining of women in the security sector. High illiteracy levels and other obstacles affected women’s participation in governance.
To overcome those challenges, she said, the Government was developing strategies to ensure greater participation of women in the security sector and was developing a fundraising strategy to raise funds for further implementation of the national action plan. It was also implementing the Rural Women’s Empowerment Programme and taking a road range of measures in other areas. She said that her Government believed that women’s further empowerment and full equality were fundamental for the achievement of development and peace.
ANNE HOLMLUND, Minister of Interior, Finland, said that conflict prevention, mediation and peaceful settlement of disputes should occupy a more central place on the peace and security agenda of the United Nations, with equal and effective participation of women at all stages and all levels of peace processes. Increasing the number of women in the highest positions could wait no longer. The United Nations and regional organizations had the responsibility to set examples and promote gender equality. As national experience had shown, national action plans on implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) had proven to be the primary tool in strategic and systematic implementation. To include the civil society was vital for the resolution’s implementation.
Turning to the issue of impunity, she said there should never be amnesties for the most serious crimes, including sexual and gender-based violence, which could constitute war crimes and crimes against humanity. Her country fully supported the efforts of the International Criminal Court in that regard. An additional tool was the potential of the Justice Rapid Response mechanism, a multilateral stand-by facility to rapidly deploy criminal justice and related professions at the service of States and international institutions. That mechanism had already successfully completed three deployments and trained more than 80 experts. Reform and strengthening of the security sector and the rule of law structures were also important, as was addressing the needs and rights to reparations for victims.
GRETE FAREMO, Minister of Defence of Norway, noted that all United Nations force commanders were men. She said it was high time to rectify that, and called on the United Nations to start searching for women commanders and continue to improve the gender ration of peacekeeping forces. The fact that resolution 1325 (2000) was not about political correctness must be better explained. Better protection and more equal participation of women in social, economic and political life — including in peace processes and security services — improved the quality of the process and the service, making results more sustainable. Greater accountability must also be ensured.
She said the Council should show leadership by maintaining its focus on full implementation of all its resolutions on women, peace and security, among other things by endorsing the set of indicators and making prosecution of perpetrators a political priority. The United Nations must be provided with resources to follow-up on the ground. She said Norway would further strengthen its support to the work of the Organization to promote and protect gender equality and the empowerment of women with a 2011 allocation of more than $30 million.
MARY WHITE, Minister of State for Integration, Equality and Human Rights, Ireland, expressed her country’s strong support for the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) and pledged to continue to work with other Government departments, civil society and academia towards an effective national action plan to that effect, to be launched early next year. Describing a cross-learning initiative launched by Ireland that drew upon the experience of those directly affected by conflict, she said she hoped that the recommendations in the final report would have impact, including its underlining of the need to end impunity for sexual violence. It was now time to demand that zero tolerance be taken seriously.
Another central idea arising from the initiative was the need to engage with men on the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), which was not a women’s issue but a global, normative issue, she said. She expressed strong support for UN Women, as well as the Secretary-General’s action plan, particularly its proposal to allocate 15 per cent of peacebuilding funds to projects that specifically addressed women’s needs. Despite the accomplishments following the adoption of resolution 1325 (2000), there was no room for complacency, as highlighted by recent events in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
ANDRAZ ZIDAR, Director-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Slovenia, aligning himself with the statements to be delivered on behalf of the European Union and by Costa Rica on behalf of the Human Security Network, said he welcomed the vast range of activities undertaken to implement resolution 1325 (2000), but he noted the fragmentation of those activities. In that light, he supported the Secretary-General’s recommendations to develop a single, comprehensive framework with goals, targets and indicators. He also supported the establishment of a dedicated working group on resolution 1325 (2000).
He said that stronger steps should be taken to address accountability and end impunity for violators of women’s human rights, adding that sexual violence should be a priority element in all Council resolutions mandating sanctions committees. He said that Slovenia was about to finalize and adopt a national action plan, calling it a key means for Member States to fulfil their responsibilities under the resolution. In his country, gender equality was a priority in the fields of human rights, development cooperation, security and defence policy.
BATHABILE DLAMINI, Deputy Minister for Social Development, South Africa, aligned herself with the statements to be delivered on behalf of the Southern African Development Community and the African Union. She said resolution 1325 (2000) represented a significant milestone, noting that women played a critical role in the struggle for liberation, transition to democracy and post-conflict reconstruction and development in South Africa. In addition, in the African Union and subregional organizations as well as in African civil society, women played a pivotal and strategic role in the prevention and resolution of conflict. She pointed out that 19 per cent of the South African National Defence Force personnel deployed in the country’s extensive contribution to peacekeeping operations were female.
Calling for the end of impunity for sexual violence, she said South Africa had long recommended that those crimes be referred to the International Criminal Court. She said she welcomed efforts of the United Nations to become more coordinated in its efforts to address such violence, as well as women’s greater participation in the prevention and resolution of conflict and the prioritization of security-sector reform. She supported the set of indicators contained in the Secretary-General’s report, as well as the draft presidential statement submitted for adoption today.
FRANK BELFRAGE, State Secretary for Foreign Affairs of Sweden, said his country would appoint a special ambassador for implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). Sweden had also been active in strengthening the gender perspective in European Union crisis management. Enhancing women’s participation was an efficient way to achieve security and development for local communities, he said, strongly urging the appointment of more female special representatives and deputy special representatives, as well as targeted efforts to train and deploy more female mediators. He welcomed the efforts of the Senior Police Adviser to increase the number of female police officers in peacekeeping operations, and said the result of Special Representative Wallström’s work would be an important indicator of the international community’s ability to address the structural violence directed against women.
ALOYSEA INYUMBA (Rwanda) said her country’s national action plan for the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) for the period 2009-2012 had as priorities: the prevention of violence and conflicts; dissemination of national and international laws dealing with women’s rights; revision of discriminatory laws; identification of discriminatory practices and the means of addressing them; and the ratification of international laws and conventions, and their domestication into national law. Among Rwanda’s efforts in those priority areas, was the integration of gender awareness and training on responding to gender-based violence into military training institutions. Rwandan female police officers had taken concrete actions to prevent sexual violence in Darfur, she said, adding that last week, 90 female officers had been deployed as advisers on gender-based violence in that region of Sudan.
JIM MCLAY ( New Zealand) said the main factor impeding implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) was the lack of a single and coordinated approach with clear indicators. He called on the Council to endorse and utilize such indicators, to increase civil society engagement and to incorporate information yielded by the indicators into the Council’s work. An effective leadership system should be established in the Council, and better integration of issues relating to the resolution would make practical sense. Involving women in peace processes and stopping sexual violence would better ensure lasting peace, which, in turn, would increase the Council’s ability to maintain international peace and security.
JOSÉ FILIPE MORAES CABRAL ( Portugal), associating with the statement to be made on behalf of the European Union, said today’s meetings and side events should be seen as opportunities to reaffirm commitments to ensuring women’s effective participation in peace and security, and to translate them into enhanced action. Portugal stood ready to contribute through an accountable and integrated approach, he said, adding that his country had adopted a national action plan in 2009, which aimed to increase women’s participation and mainstream gender equality into all phases of peacebuilding processes; to promote capacity-building in that light; to promote and protect women’s human rights; to invest in and disseminate knowledge on related issues; and to promote the active participation of civil society.
PETER WITTIG (Germany), associating with the European Union, welcomed the Secretary-General’s clear and action-oriented recommendations on implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), saying he shared the analysis on gaps, the need to introduce indicators and an adequate monitoring mechanism, and the necessity of increasing financing for gender equality and women’s empowerment in countries emerging from conflict. Germany prioritized increased participation of women in international institutions, particularly in higher positions, as well as financial and technical support for United Nations campaigns to raise gender awareness, a gender perspective in negotiating and implementing peace agreements, and addressing the special needs of women combatants in reintegration processes. Wide partnerships and coordination were crucial in all those areas, he said.
OCTAVIO ERRÁZURIZ (Chile), endorsing the interventions of Costa Rica on behalf of Human Security Network and Canada on behalf of the Group of Friends of resolution 1325 (2000), said full implementation of the resolution would only be possible if the coming decade was focused on action and accountability in the areas of prevention, participation and protection. He expressed support for the Secretary-General’s recommendations, including on indicators for a preliminary road map, which would have to be carefully improved after consultation with Member States. In that light, the questionnaire-based consultations being conducted by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) was important with regard to accountability. Chile’s commitment to the resolution was represented by its national action plan — the only one in the region — which related to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, defence institutions, civil society and regional cooperation.
MARY E. FLORES ( Honduras), welcoming the establishment of UN Women and the incorporation of more women into the Organization’s leadership, said women and children constituted the vast majority of innocent victims of conflict, and it was, therefore, ironic that women were also healers. From birth, they were peacemakers and negotiators, both within their families and beyond. They listened with their emotions and could reach the soul to cure wounds where medicine and science stumbled. There were many self-sacrificing women in her country’s history, which could be written in tears, and in the Central America of the 1980s, she said, adding that they had supported and educated their children, assisted the helpless and cared for refugees, all while working as volunteers. She paid tribute to them as “heroines of peace”.
CARSTEN STAUR (Denmark) said that, in implementing resolution 1325 (2000), the remaining piece in the puzzle seemed to be a single comprehensive framework for the United Nations system, with clear roles and responsibilities, as well as measurable goals, targets and indicators. He, therefore, encouraged efforts to further consolidate the United Nations peacebuilding architecture and enhance system-wide strategies. UN Women must play a key role in leading the women, peace and security agenda while ensuring close and effective cooperation with all United Nations actors, funds and programmes, he said, adding that its establishment was a vital step towards achieving the full mainstreaming of women and gender issues. On 30 October, Denmark would co-host an international conference on the “Role of women in global security”, he added.
BYRGANYM AITIMOVA ( Kazakhstan) said the successful launch of the “Open Days for Women and Peace” this past June brought to light the need to go from resolution to action. Women on the whole remained marginalized in mediation round tables with their needs and voices unheard. His country fully endorsed the Secretary-General’s recommendation to ensure that at least 15 per cent of United Nations funds for peacebuilding be dedicated to projects that addressed specific needs of women and girls, and also advanced gender equality and empowered women.
She said the high incidence of sexual violence in conflict and post-conflict reconstruction phases was of major concern. In that context, Kazakhstan strongly supported the request of Margot Wallström, the Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, for establishing new posts and allocating additional funding. Her delegation had great expectations for the future of UN Women. There should be concrete benchmarks by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations for women’s participation in peacekeeping and peacebuilding activities.
NOJIBUR RAHMAN ( Bangladesh) expressed his country’s disappointment that violence against women and girls were still delineated in different reports. They suffered most as victims of conflict, and were often prime targets. The international community must ensure that oppression against them was stopped forever. “Protecting women’s rights is not an option; it is a compulsion that requires coordinated actions from all of us,” he said. He stressed the need to consider women’s economic needs, as well as the engagement of women at all levels and forms of decision-making.
He said women from the “global South” must receive due recognition in the recruitment of women to senior United Nations positions; that would allow for a clearer understanding of Southern women’s needs. Bangladesh had made significant progress in the area of gender mainstreaming, and was aware that it needed to ensure a gender perspective in all conflict prevention activities and strategies. It also sought to develop effective gender-sensitive early warning mechanisms, and to strengthen efforts to prevent violence against women, including forms of gender-based violence.
STEFAN BARRIGA ( Liechtenstein) said that in adopting resolution 1325 (2000), the Security Council had acknowledged the negative impact of armed conflict on women, and highlighted their decisive role in conflict prevention and in consolidating peace. However, 10 years later their plight continued unabated. Recent incidents in the Democratic Republic of the Congo had confirmed that sexual violence was used as a method of warfare to achieve military and strategic ends. Women were still excluded from decision-making processes in peace negotiations and post-conflict reconstruction, and continued to be seriously underrepresented at the United Nations in positions such as Special Representative and Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General.
The agenda item on women and peace and security was intrinsically linked to the way in which the Security Council received and analysed information on its implementation, as well as on the commitment of Member States to take concrete action. He cited initiatives Liechtenstein had joined, and said it would continue its financial support for the International Criminal Court’s Trust Fund for Victims, which adopted a gender-based perspective across all programming and had a specific focus on victims of sexual violence.
TIINA INTELMANN ( Estonia) said that in the past week, Estonia had adopted its national action plan for the implementation of Security Council resolution 1325 (2000). The plan would, over four years, help systematize and enhance activities at the national level, as well as in regional and international organizations. The action plan included, among others, steps to increase gender-related expertise, the inclusion of gender perspective in crisis management, and the expansion of women’s participation in international civilian and military missions. Furthermore, targeted information and recruitment campaigns towards women in military, police and international missions would be initiated. She said that the promotion of women and girls in her country’s development and humanitarian activities was a priority, including projects in Afghanistan, which aimed at supporting access to health care and education.
The increasing of coherence and accountability in implementation of the resolution required that specific steps be taken. To this end, she said she supported the call for the development of a strategic framework that would cover the next decade. She said the establishment of a working group to review the progress being made, alongside a global set of indicators, would contribute to a more thorough analysis and definition of future goals promoting the resolution.
PAUL SEGER (Switzerland), associating with the Group of Friends and the Human Security Network, said he wished to convey the voices of the women he had met in Burundi in his capacity as Chair of the Burundi configuration of the Peacebuilding Commission. They wore white shawls in a public demonstration of their will for peace when violence occurred during elections, and in that way were able to keep the level of violence down. The set of indicators that the Council was endorsing today represented important progress, but their application called for political leadership by the Council. Switzerland supported the idea of a “1325 Lead Country” and the creation of a single, comprehensive framework to guide implementation of the resolution. UN Women could also create a 1325 office within itself, he said, expressing hope that Ms. Wallström would provide the Council with detailed information upon which to take action.
WALTER A. FÜLLEMANN, Permanent Observer for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), said women’s issues had moved to the forefront of the international agenda in the 10 years, since the adoption of resolution 1325 (2000). ICRC, for its part, had emphasized the respect and protection accorded to women and girls by international humanitarian law across all its programmes and operational activities. Prevention efforts were essential for women during conflict. The international community must react to sexual violence as to any other crime, and Member States must resolutely engage in preventing it.
His organization also emphasized the prohibition of rape and other forms of sexual violence through international humanitarian law training programmes for armed forces and armed groups. Activities in communities were often carried out together with the Red Cross and Red Cross Crescent Societies, particularly those aiming to sensitize local communities so that sexual violence survivors were not stigmatized. He said the ICRC strongly encouraged Member States to include provisions in their national legislation to ensure better respect for women and girls at all times, and especially during times of war or other situations of violence.
ISABELLE PICCO (Monaco), describing the participation of women as a “sine qua non condition” for peace consolidation and peacebuilding, said their role was indispensable for ensuring lasting peace, as well as social and political cohesion. The establishment of State institutions must be backed up to guarantee scrupulous implementation of international humanitarian and human rights law. It was imperative that atrocities did not go unpunished, particularly when rape was used as a weapon of war, she stressed. Welcoming efforts to set up a single framework to implement resolution 1325 (2000), she said the proposed indicators should enable the Organization to measure progress in important areas. She also welcomed efforts by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations to strengthen representation of women in peacekeeping missions.
GUNNAR PÁLSSON ( Iceland) said progress in implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) had been slow and, ultimately, disappointing. Only a handful of countries had adopted national action plans, while armed conflicts still devastated the lives of women and girls who were subjected to terrifying violence and regularly marginalized in peacemaking. “We must now focus on action, implementation and accountability, so that 10 years from now we can look back with a sense of achievement and say that we have made a difference,” he said. Urging the Council to make effective use of the indicators set out in the report, with UN Women playing an important role in overseeing their monitoring and implementation, he said Iceland’s national action plan had been in effect for three years and would be revised next year. The country also promoted the resolution in its international cooperation efforts, including by emphasizing the importance of a gender perspective in climate talks.
BUI THE GIANG ( Viet Nam) said it was worrying to learn that women continued to face abhorrent conditions in situations of armed conflict. Not only mere victims, but also agents of change, women should be able to participate more in peace talks, he said, adding that they could also play an active role in peacebuilding and reconstruction if they were empowered financially, politically and institutionally. He expressed hope that the seven commitments listed in the Secretary-General’s report could be fully honoured in that regard. The set of indicators could provide a helpful toolkit for the United Nations system and countries wishing to use them on a voluntary basis. However, certain indicators needed more careful consideration and should contain a more “encouraging” rather than “imposing” character, he said.
SYLVIE LUCAS ( Luxembourg) said it was crucial that women were engaged in efforts to consolidate peace at all levels. The Secretary-General’s seven-point action plan, if implemented, would serve as a great contribution to implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). All States had the responsibility to end impunity, she stressed, adding that the recent mass rapes in North Kivu had brutally underlined that the goal of ending sexual violence as a tool of war remained far away. Fighting impunity must no longer be an abstract matter but must become a reality, she emphasized, calling on the Council to impose targeted sanctions on perpetrators of grave violations of the human rights of women, including perpetrators of sexual violence. She also called for the creation of a working group to advise the Council on the resolution’s implementation.
RAYMOND WOLFE ( Jamaica) called on the international community to strengthen its resolve to eliminate the disproportionate effects of war on civilians, particularly women and children. Over the years, presidential statements from the Council had urged Member States, the United Nations system and civil society to fully implement resolution 1325 (2000). However, many had still not heeded those calls. He said Member States should play an integral role in ensuring the appointment of qualified women at high levels with the United Nations system. There were now signs of increased commitment and action by the Council to ensure that the resolution was fully implemented.
In some parts of the world, he asserted, women had become increasingly effective participants at the peace table and had continued to assist in creating an enabling environment for conflict prevention, peacekeeping, peacebuilding and post-conflict construction. Progress in those areas, however, had not been consistent. For its part, Jamaica had worked to ensure women’s participation in peace and security through its increased presence in United Nations peacekeeping operations. Today’s celebration was a reminder that the high cost reconstruction efforts in post-conflict situations weighed heavily in favour of prevention and peacebuilding measures. Gender equality was, therefore, an essential precursor to democratic governance and inclusive, sustainable development.
MAGED ABDELAZIZ ( Egypt) said his country had played an historic role in ensuring the protection of women in situations of armed conflict, noting that Suzanne Mubarak, the First Lady, had led the International Movement of Women for Peace. He said the set of indicators, including the validity of each, required thorough consideration and approval by the Assembly. Any attempt to extend the scope of their application beyond conflict and post-conflict situations, or to provide a wider definition of those situations would be a clear encroachment by the Council on the Assembly’s competence, and would have a negative effect on the mandate, competence and effectiveness of UN Women. It would also cause duplication of the work carried out by such international legally binding instruments as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, he added.
DIEGO LIMERES ( Argentina), associating with the Group of Friends, reaffirmed his country’s firm commitment to full implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), saying it had participated in its adoption as a non-permanent member of the Council. Outlining policies instituted in Argentina’s defence sector, which was headed by a woman, he said they aimed to grant a voice to the women members of the Armed Forces as a result of reforms to counter discrimination. In 2007, Argentina had been selected by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations to undergo programmes for implementation of the resolution in peacekeeping, he said, adding that it had also instituted monitoring tools. It planned to release the results of surveys undertaken in its efforts in Haiti, and to go forward with pre-deployment training programmes and other initiatives.
PIET DE KLERK ( Netherlands) said that, in order to implement resolution 1325 (2000), one of the “least complicated resolutions to implement”, one must talk to, protect and involve women. Not only was an active role for women needed in interventions aimed at ending conflicts, but the partnership of men was also needed, he said, adding that male leaders were needed to speak on the atrocities of sexual violence. Describing his country’s activities in implementation of the resolution, he said the Netherlands would, among other things, support a training module on sexual violence geared towards peacekeepers and a human rights training package for the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Netherlands also supported the Justice Rapid Response initiative, he added.
GONZALO GUTIÉRREZ (Peru) reiterated that the participation of women in all peace activities must be comprehensive, pointing out that many women served in his country’s security sector, which was increasing their participation. Mainstreaming a gender perspective in the planning of peacekeeping operations was crucial, he said, recalling that recent events had shown the critical importance of a capacity to respond to attacks against women, and of ensuring reliable information-gathering. In addition, adequate training was needed for personnel on the ground, he said, adding that institutions that reinforced the rule of law must be built in post-conflict situations. All those activities must be assured through a comprehensive framework, and the indicators proposed by the Secretary-General were important in that regard, he said, suggesting that the Council also consider establishing a working group tasked with following up on resolution 1325 (2000).
AMJAD HUSSAIN SIAL ( Pakistan) said that, as the largest troop-contributing country, Pakistan recognized fully the important role that women played in peacekeeping operations, and supported the mainstreaming of a gender perspective and all steps to increase their participation in peacekeeping and peacebuilding operations. Peacekeeping missions must be provided with adequate resources for the discharge of their mandates, he stressed, adding that the protection of civilians, including women and girls, remained an important mandated task. However, only peaceful and secure environments, maintained by capable and resourceful authorities, could ensure that. Economic recovery and social cohesion, as well as women’s access to health, education and entrepreneurship, were essential for long-term peace, he said.
HAIM WAXMAN ( Israel) said the adoption of resolution 1325 (2000) was a watershed in the protection of women and girls in conflict situations. Recent events, however, such as the violations that took place in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and in Guinea were a stark highlight of the wide gap that remained between noble aspirations and the level of protection provided on the ground. The development of indicators was a welcome step in the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) in helping to determine the areas of success and shortfalls. If the indicators were to be truly useful, the information generated must be used to address shortcomings in a concerted and candid manner to ensure that goals were met.
He said the United Nations had a number of effective tools to push forward the objective. Consistent leadership within the Council could consider ways to maintain engagement more comprehensively. The Secretary-General could deploy the team of experts to areas of concern to assist States in strengthening the rule of law, building judicial capacity and reforming the security sector. Some societies would need to experience a “seismic” shift in gender attitudes on the ground to ensure the inclusion of women in peacemaking and post-conflict reconstruction. Member States bore a large part of the responsibility for implementing the provisions of resolutions. His country, for example, had amended its Women’s Equal Rights Law to mandate the inclusion of women in any group appointed to peacebuilding or conflict resolution. It also helped countries in implementing resolution 1325 (2000) by organizing programmes in women’s leadership and in capacity-building for women’s non-governmental organizations.
ADEL BEN LAGHA ( Tunisia) underscored his country’s longstanding commitment to the advancement of gender equality and empowerment of women, which he said was a strategic choice made by Tunisia upon its independence in 1956. While the tenth anniversary of resolution 1325 (2000) was an appropriate occasion to take stock of its progress, despite 10 years of effort, few significant achievements were evident on the ground. He said commitments towards the protection of women and girls had fallen short of the pledges made, and violence against women and girls in conflict and post-conflict situations continued to be devastating, particularly in Africa. The mass rape in July this year in the eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo demonstrated that women remained deliberate targets of gender-based violence, in particular, sexual violence. Moreover, while women were widely recognized as agents of peace, they still enjoyed little decision-making power and the gender composition of peacemaking missions remained unbalanced.
He said it was, therefore, a good time to reinvigorate the efforts at the international and national level. Member States must shoulder the responsibility to combat the use of rape as a tool of war, to increase the participation of women in peace operations and peace talks, to protect the rights of women and girls and to integrate gender perspective in regard to policy. To that end, Tunisia was poised to finalize and adopt its national action plan which, among other initiatives, would highlight women’s training in peacekeeping and enhance training of military and law enforcement, so as to protect women and girls from gender-based violence.
LILIÁN SILVEIRA ( Uruguay) said that, despite the progress made, women and girls remained the most vulnerable and excluded in conflict situations. There were enormous gaps between the desires and understanding of Headquarters and realities on the ground. The Organization’s cross-cutting adaptation to the resolution had allowed the avoidance of many ills, but there was a need for greater attention to the recovery of sexual violence victims and to fight impunity on the part of the perpetrators. Periodic attacks on civilians had brought to light the Organization’s limitations on the ground, she said, emphasizing that clear, predictable and appropriate strategies for all peacekeeping missions could help eliminate those weaknesses.
COLLIN BECK ( Solomon Islands) said the role of women in bringing about the peaceful settlement of conflicts was an indispensable requirement for sustainable development and peace for developing countries, particularly least developed countries. The Solomon Islands had restructured the national security institutions and now had more women in its police force. However, mainstreaming gender funding within the wider Government system was a work in progress. Localizing resolution 1325 (2000) in small island developing States required a need to look at the challenges that women faced on a daily basis, particularly the impact of climate change. He called for a shift in the United Nations approach, from supporting implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) from a “one-size-fits-all” perspective to regionalization, and for the upgrading of the United Nations presence in the Pacific region.
CARLOS ENRIQUE GARCÍA GONZÁLEZ (El Salvador) said women must indeed participate as equals in the maintenance of peace and security, adding that he viewed the adoption of resolution 1325 (2000) as fundamental to confronting obstacles to full participation. As a troop-contributing country, El Salvador was making a significant contribution to peacekeeping and working to promote a gender perspective while integrating 1325 (2000) into its institutions. The Government was implementing its second national policy for women, he added. The tenth anniversary of resolution 1325 (2000) was a valuable opportunity to establish a bridge between the Council and the Assembly on women’s contributions to conflict prevention and resolution, as well as peacebuilding. It was time for cooperation between those two bodies on such issues.
HASAN KLEIB ( Indonesia) said resolution 1325 (2000) complemented the range of international frameworks on women, including the Beijing Platform for Action. Ten years after its adoption, the Council’s attention to the elimination of sexual violence in armed conflict had been unwavering. However, despite an increasing number of activities to implement the resolution, progress was slow, fragmented, without clear direction, and lacking time-bound goals. Hopefully UN Women would help to enhance coherence and coordination in implementing the resolution. Women’s potential contribution to conflict resolution had not been adequately harnessed — an “enormous” deficit for common efforts. To exclude women from conflict-resolution processes deprived major stakeholders of representation and prevented the shaping of a sustainable peace, based on including all perspectives, he said, adding that there was a need for timely and systematic reporting on women and peace and security issues.
GARY QUINLAN ( Australia) said the tenth anniversary provided an opportunity to take stock of what had been done over the last decade while looking forward to what more could be done. In that time, more than 20 countries had finalized national action plans on women, peace and security and many more were developing such plans. In 2009, resolution 1888 had broken important new ground in addressing sexual violence in conflict, he recalled, noting, however, that despite progress made, gaps remained and resolution 1325 (2000) still needed to be addressed in a comprehensive and strategic manner. He urged the Council to endorse the set of indicators developed for use at all levels in tracking the resolution’s implementation. Moreover, gaps remained in efforts to tackle sexual violence in conflict, which called for the provision of operational guidance, training and resource to mission leadership and peacekeepers.
RANKO VILOVIĆ ( Croatia), associating with the European Union, said the commitments set forth in resolution 1325 (2000) were commendable, but translating words into action was the only way to resolve remaining issues. Women still had a long way to go to fulfil the empowerment goals outlined in the resolution and to realize fully their human rights in times of both war and peace. Impunity for acts of sexual violence against women was prevalent and the prosecution rate was low, he noted, pointing out that, even on Croatian territory, rape was used as a method of intimidation and terror. The Council must provide strong and effective leadership to address sexual violence against women and girls, taking action when necessary with the aim of eradicating that abhorrent behaviour. At the same time, the resolution’s integration must be country-driven and States must be responsible for ensuring the text was integrated into national policies.
ZAHIR TANIN ( Afghanistan) said that, since 2001, his country had made considerable progress in the advancement of women. Key areas of success included political participation, education and health. In recent elections, 406 out of 2,556 candidates had been women, ensuring that at least 68 seats of the seats allocated to women, or 25 per cent would be filled by women. Furthermore, women would comprise at least a quarter of Parliament, nearing the nation’s Millennium Development Goal of 30 per cent, and make up 18 per cent of Government employees. As for education, approximately 37 per cent of the 7 million students in Afghanistan were female, he said, adding that in the area of health care, basic health services were provided to nearly 90 per cent of the population, a tremendous improvement for men and women alike. Resolution 1325 (2000) was not about rescuing women, but about recognizing their unique role as peacemakers and creating opportunities for them to excel in leadership roles, he said. “What better place in the world to demonstrate the importance of this issue than Afghanistan?”
RIYAD MANSOUR, Permanent Observer for Palestine, recalled that the Council had expressed concern that civilians, mainly women and children, accounted for the vast majority of those adversely affected by armed conflict. Regrettably, women’s hopes for improved lives had not been realized, a fact that was extremely tragic in the case of Palestinian women, whose situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, remained in dire humanitarian crisis. The Israeli military occupation had caused innumerable hardships for them, which required the international community, in line with resolution 1325 (2000), to do more to end that deplorable situation. Citing an example, he said the Council had failed to protect Palestinian women during and after the latest Israeli war of aggression in the Gaza Strip, showing the extent to which the resolution was “totally ignored”. Countless Israeli violations and constant humiliations in the West Bank continued to have vicious consequences on the advancement and empowerment of Palestinian women, he said.
OMBENI SEFUE (United Republic of Tanzania), associating with the Southern African Development Community and the Group of Friends, stressed that women should participate equally in formulating political, economic and social policies. Their potential as peacebuilders must be harnessed immediately. The international community must apply concerted efforts to support and strengthen women’s capacities and networks so that they could participate actively in conflict prevention and management, as well as peacebuilding and consolidation. In that regard, the effective implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) was a necessity, he said, emphasizing that women’s participation in peace processes should be routine, predictable and mandatory.
AMRIT B. RAI ( Nepal) said that, during the celebration of the tenth anniversary of the resolution’s adoption, it was pertinent to gather pragmatic inputs, experiences and policy suggestions. Nepal hoped to see an increasing number of women appointed Special Representatives of the Secretary-General and other high-ranking positions in the United Nations system. As a nation emerging from conflict, Nepal was fully aware of the benefits of implementing resolution 1325 (2000), and was preparing a national action plan towards that end. The time had come for the international community to redouble its efforts to enhance women’s involvement in peacemaking, peacekeeping and peacebuiding by putting resolution 1325 (2000) into practice.
PETER THOMSON ( Fiji), associating with the Pacific Small Island Developing States, said overall implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) had been slow, and for that reason, Fiji welcomed the Secretary-General’s set of indicators. They could only provide their utmost advantage if accompanied by national implementation frameworks and policies in helping countries to link relevant principles with practical Government policies. A regional framework was important in accelerating such a process in the Pacific, he said. Reiterating his country’s commitment to implementing the resolution, he noted Fiji’s efforts to recruit women into its security forces and their deployment, with equal opportunities, on peacekeeping missions.
ROBERT GUBA AISI (Papua New Guinea), speaking on behalf of the Pacific Small Island Developing States, emphasized the Group’s commitment to full implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) and welcomed the establishment of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) advisory group in that regard. To advance implementation in the region, it was important to focus on diverse situations on the ground, he said, asking the United Nations to support the convening of a regional high-level meeting to address country-level implementation. The development of a regional action plan would bring women into the regional peace and security agenda, he said, noting, however, that inadequate funding remained a serious challenge. He asked the Organization to support the work of Pacific non-governmental organizations and civil society groups like Pacific FemLink, and to support peace training for military and police personnel to ensure compliance with human rights.
ZACHARIE GAHUTU ( Burundi) said the people of his country had, in the course of various conflicts, understood that the search for peace could not be carried out by men alone but should also include women. Women in Burundi were the pillars of the family and, therefore, of society, he said, adding that they, therefore, understood that they should play a role in the search for peace. The Arusha negotiations had given women a seat at the negotiating table, something which, according to some, had inspired some of the provisions of resolution 1325 (2000). The Arusha Peace Agreement included gender-specific dimensions, and Burundi was, therefore, in a good position to implement the resolution. Since 2005, the State had tried to give women an important role in managing public affairs, with the result that they were well represented in the representative, executive and judicial sectors.
LIBRAN N. CABACTULAN ( Philippines) said his country attached great importance to integration of gender equality perspectives in peace and security issues. This year it became the first Asian country to adopt a national action plan so that in conflict and post-conflict situations it could ensure the prevention of violation of women’s rights, empower women to ensure their meaningful participation and promote and mainstream gender perspectives. Sixty-eight Filipino women were now serving in United Nations peacekeeping missions in Haiti, Darfur, the Golan Heights, Liberia, Sudan and Timor-Leste, he said. However, challenges remained, and the Philippines agreed a comprehensive framework to set up priorities and establish coherence was needed to help women’s full and equal participation as active agents in peace and security.
JAN GRAULS ( Belgium), associating with the European Union, said it was disconcerting that half the world’s population was still excluded from discussions of sustainable peace and democracy. He called on the Council to endorse the Secretary-General’s proposed indicators and establish a mechanism for accountability and reporting to monitor implementation of the resolution. He further asked that the Council effectively impose targeted measures against all parties to conflicts that violated women’s rights and include sexual violence in resolutions mandating sanctions. He outlined his country’s activities to help implement resolution 1325 (2000) in 14 countries, as well as Belgium’s own national action plan. As Chair of a country-specific configuration of the Peacebuilding Commission, he affirmed that body’s importance in implementing the resolution.
CLAUDIA BLUM (Colombia) shared national experiences towards accomplishing existing international commitments regarding the promotion and protection of women’s rights, including resolution 1325 (2000). She said Colombia had passed an act in December 2008, which set standards for awareness, prevention and punishment of all forms of violence and discrimination against women. Further, it had worked in cooperation with UNIFEM, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to run its Integrated Programme against Gender Violence. Although her country had an important legislative and public policies framework to mainstream gender perspectives, challenges remained with their harmonization, with the revision of indicators based on international standards and with the adoption of special measures against sexual violence.
PEDRO SERRANO, Acting Head of Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations, said that, despite 10 years of effort, protecting women in conflict situations and promoting them in peace processes had “fallen short” of commitments made by the international community. To fully implement the resolution, the European Union had, in 2008, adopted a comprehensive approach that encompassed humanitarian, development, security and foreign policy measures. A range of programmes were established to address the needs of women and girls in conflict-affected and post-conflict situations including, among others, the funding of medical services for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence. He noted that last week the European Union and the African Union organized a seminar in Addis Ababa which brought European Union civil society representatives to discuss boosting women’s participation in peace and security, as well as to explore recommendations for joint actions.
Turning to future plans, he said that the European Union was developing, among others, specific standard training elements to be used by its staff and by peace and security missions and operations on gender and human rights in crisis management. The aim would be to increase gender capacity and female civil and military participation in peace missions. He also projected that by 2013 local strategies to implement the Council’s resolution 1325 (2000) would be incorporated into its development cooperation activities in at least 60 per cent of fragile, conflict or post-conflict countries. Concluding, he called for a dedicated working group to be established to review progress in the implementation of the resolution and to make recommendations to the Council on addressing gaps and challenges in this matter. He also called for the Security Council to redouble its efforts in the fight against impunity, holding accountable perpetrators of sexual violence, including commanders who commissioned or condoned the use of sexual violence.
TETE ANTONIO, Permanent Observer for the African Union, said the Union had continued to develop its specific policy and institutional capacity in the area of women, peace and security. The African Union Gender Policy stressed the need to reinforce good practices of respect, equality and human dignity between men and women, and to enforce zero tolerance of gender-based violence, stressing the need for severe sanctions for perpetrators of such acts. The policy also called for the mobilization of women leaders to participate in mediation and post-conflict processes and for the African Union to work jointly with relevant United Nations bodies on measures for tracking violations against women and girls during conflict.
Describing other examples of the gender policy, he said that, despite the African Union’s commitment to involve women in conflict resolution and peacebuilding, their participation during peace negotiations was still not common. The African Union Gender Audit of 2006 had revealed that limited progress had been made in implementing various commitments, often due to lack of capacity or willingness to mainstream gender and ensure women’s empowerment. The African Union had developed the Gender Mainstreaming Strategic Plan covering the period 2008 to 2011 to continue implementation of commitments towards the protection and empowerment of women, as an integrated part of the overall vision of a peaceful, united and prosperous Africa.
He called for implementation of the indicators to help monitor and address the issues of fragmentation in global implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) and to provide a basis for monitoring the success of the implementation of National Action Plans.
MICHEL KAFANDO ( Burkina Faso) said it was unfortunate that none of the efforts undertaken had been able to ensure the protection of women and girls in conflict situations, or their effective participation at all stages of peace processes, not to mention eradicating inequality and sexual violence. It was, therefore, necessary to make implementation a priority at all levels, by increasing awareness-raising, working for security-sector reform, involving women’s organizations and other measures. Coordination among the various parts of the United Nations system was also crucial, he said, expressing hope that the creation of UN Women would help bring that about. He said his country’s national gender policy included setting a quota of 30 per cent representation for women in the legislature, and establishing a programme to combat violence against women.
HARDEEP SINGH PURI ( India) expressed pride that both India and Sikhism, the religion to which he belonged, held gender equality and the empowerment of women in high regard. India had taken an historic initiative by reserving one third of the seats in more than 300,000 institutions of local Government for women, and planned further steps towards increasing their participation to 50 per cent. With 1.2 million now serving, there were perhaps more elected women in India alone than in the rest of world put together, he said. Globally, however, efforts must be redoubled to increase women’s participation in all components of peacemaking, he said. Among India’s extensive contributions to peacekeeping, was the distinction of having been the first country to deploy a full female unit, in Liberia. Unfortunately, that oft-cited example remained a rarity, he said, expressing support for the creation of a Council working group dedicated to resolution 1325 (2000), and calling for the quickest possible agreement on a set of indicators to mark progress. He also called attention to the difficulty of obtaining good data in conflict-ridden environments, and called for more stringent regulation to combat sexual violence.
LOTFI BUCHAARA (Morocco) said the momentum created by the adoption of resolution 1325 (2000) had strengthened national and international judicial and institutional mechanisms for the promotion and protections of women’s rights and their empowerment in conflict and post-conflict situations, specifically through the adoption of national action plans. However, the situation of women and girls in several regions remained intolerable, he said, asking the Council to guarantee regular monitoring of implementation through the integration of a gender-based approach. The proposed indicators must be further evaluated, he said, adding that there was also room to improve coordination among the various United Nations bodies, something that UN Women could address.
WILFRIED I. EMVULA ( Namibia), speaking on behalf of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), said gender equality and the empowerment of women was one of the subregional body’s founding principles and was enshrined in the SADC Treaty. The 2008 Protocol on Gender and Development of 2008 put measures in place to ensure that women would be equally represented and enjoy equal participation in all key decision-making positions by 2015. It also called on member States to take the necessary steps to prevent and eliminate human rights abuses against women and children during armed conflict. Effective peacebuilding started from the national and subregional levels, and it was, therefore, vitally important that the United Nations work closely with such groups. SADC was deeply concerned about the widespread and systematic sexual violence in conflict situations and condemned the use of sexual and gender-based violence against women and children, he said, calling on all parties to armed conflict to respect regional mechanisms and international law applicable to their rights and protections. Given the opportunity, women were active agents of change and played a critical role in the recovery and reintegration of families after conflict, he said, emphasizing that women were also instrumental in bringing about reconciliation and democracy in post-conflict societies.
He said his national statement would be distributed together with the text on behalf of SADC.
SERGIY KYSLYTSYA ( Ukraine), associating with the European Union, said he supported the Secretary-General’s recommendations, including his proposed indicators and urged States to begin using them. He also called for a unified strategy on full implementation of the resolution, hoping that the emergence of UN Women would help accomplish that goal. Strongly condemning the targeting of women and girls in armed conflicts, he said the Council must address their situations and work to increase their participation in all stages of peace processes. Ukraine had been contributing women police to such peace efforts for years and they had been seen as especially valuable, he said, pledging that his country would continue to work for the protection of women and to ensure their participation in peace processes.
CSABA KÖRÖSI ( Hungary) said women’s participation in the maintenance of peace and security was a basic human right within itself and should be supported. Violence against women, including sexual and gender-based, posed a real threat to global security and was a challenge to women’s full and active participation in peace processes. Hungary was strongly committed to implementing resolution 1325 (2000) and was finalizing an action plan to that end. As holder of the incoming European Union Presidency in the first semester of 2010, his country desired to maintain the current momentum through organizing a conference as a follow-up to the tenth anniversary. Finally, he stressed that enhanced cooperation in the field of women, peace and security, as well as a joint commitment to foster that agenda, would ensure that women fully enjoy their fundamental rights.
EDUARDO ULIBARRI (Costa Rica), speaking for the Human Security network, said that the resolution had contributed to an increased political focus on women, peace and security and that, along with later resolutions, it had formed the basis for the United Nations policy framework in that area, guiding Member States, United Nation entities and civil society. However, despite such progress, many challenges remained, in particular the “abhorrent conditions” women and girls faced in armed conflict situations. He called for an urgent and effective response with clear objectives from the international community, starting with the ending of impunity and the increased awareness of rape as a tactic and consequence of armed conflict, among others. Moreover, a greater coherence and systematic response by the United Nations system was vital, which ensured an increased consultation and cooperation with regional and subregional organizations, Member States and civil society.
Regarding impunity, he stressed that the role of international criminal justice, notably that of the International Criminal Court, was essential in addressing cases of sexual violence and armed conflict. The Rome Statue had recognized sexual violence as a potential war crime and crime against humanity, “in itself a major achievement”, and the Court was now examining situations involving sexual violence. Furthermore, the systemic use of violence against women was a security issue as well, affecting a whole society and impeding the restoration of international peace and security. Women played a pivotal role in the economic recovery of post-conflict countries, and he recognized the Peacebuilding Commission’s efforts in that area. However, that needed to be actualized on a political level by increasing women’s participation in political posts, through elections and appointments, involving women in peace negotiations and taking into account the needs of women in peace agreements.
PAULETTE BETHEL ( Bahamas) said the Security Council and the international community owed it to the victims of sexual violence in conflict zones to do more to prevent such crimes, punish the perpetrators and establish conditions where violence against women was “treated like the societal anathema that it is”. The citizens of the Bahamas, she continued, counted themselves fortunate, not having had first-hand knowledge of war and civil strife. However, conflict anywhere was a threat to peace everywhere, she said, paraphrasing the late Martin Luther King. The Bahamas supported women’s participation at all stages of peace processes, including disarmament, she said, stating her delegation’s support of a Caribbean Community (CARICOM) draft resolution on “Women, Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-proliferation” introduced in the First Committee (Disarmament and International Security). The Security Council should back its declarations and directives with appropriate resources and solid tools, including police, funds, equipment and training, she said.
JOSEPHINE OJIAMBO ( Kenya) said that, despite the modest gains in the creation of institutions and frameworks for implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), it must be sadly recognized that women and children continued to suffer disproportionately in conflict situations. Violence against women must be dealt with firmly, and for that reason, the resolution must be fully implemented, human rights and humanitarian law must be fully complied with, and women must participate in rebuilding efforts, free from threats, intimidation and discrimination. Kenya’s newly promulgated Constitution had provisions for the participation of women at the highest levels, and the country had made deliberate efforts to increase the participation of women in peacekeeping missions. She said that the establishment of UN Women should strengthen the voice of women on issues affecting them. As States bore primary responsibility to protect their citizens, she called for increased international efforts to assist peacebuilding, to ensure that women did not suffer. Support was also needed to assist States in adhering to the new indicators.
DAFFA-ALLA ELHAG ALI OSMAN ( Sudan) urged for full implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), among other ways through the adoption of comprehensive national action plans. Noting that Sudan had been a pioneer in empowering women, he described how, since 1964, women had gained positions in federal and local governments, in the judiciary and in the armed and police forces. Part of the Government’s strategy addressing violence against women was the establishment of social police units. Disarmament, demobilization and reintegration programmes had given priority to the situation of women, in coordination with UNIFEM. Raising assistance to developing countries was the shortest way to enhance the status of women and addressing the root causes of conflict, as well as achieving a comprehensive political settlement of conflicts, was the best way to address the situation of women in armed conflict. He stressed that all actions by the Council and the wider United Nations should be based on correct information, not on information spread by some non-governmental organizations and media. The Council should rely on the country reports submitted by Member States on the status of resolution’s implementation.
PALITHA T.B. KOHONA ( Sri Lanka) said young girls were often forced into early and underage marriages and early pregnancies, in the context of some armed conflicts involving non-State actors. Such practices posed serious health problems for young mothers and their children. A level playing field in terms of gender equity continued to elude women in post-conflict contexts as well. Those issues, he said, called for the international community’s urgent and undivided attention. He went on to share national experiences, and noted that Sri Lanka was ranked number 16 on gender parity in the World Economic Forum’s 2010 Gender Gap Report. As the proliferation of small arms increased the risk of interpersonal violence, efforts to curb their spread would be a “step in the right direction” in minimizing gender-based violence. With regard to the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), he cautioned that a balanced, transparent and objective approach was needed in the selection of data used for information on proposed indicators.
EIRINI LEMOS-MANIATI, Civilian Liaison Officer of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) said her organization was ready to play its full role by pursuing a pragmatic approach to implementing resolution 1325 (2000), having already integrated the resolution into its approach and agreed with its partners to a comprehensive list of concrete actions to mainstream gender perspectives into partnership programmes. In all the gender-sensitive areas in which the alliance has operations, it had made it clear that the involvement of women at all levels was crucial. With a military directive issued in 2009 to mainstream resolution 1325 (2000) into all its operations, including a strict code of conduct, the first NATO military gender advisers were deployed in Afghanistan and would also be soon deployed to the Kosovo multinational security force (KFOR). Pre-deployment training was also important. She pledged that NATO would continue to encourage nations to develop action plans and encourage women to take their rightful place in shaping the future of Afghanistan.
OSMAN KEH KAMARA ( Sierra Leone) said that from his country’s experience it was clear that sustainable peace could not be achieved without the full and effective participation of women in conflict prevention, conflict resolution, and peace processes, as well as post-conflict reconstruction and peacebuilding. Increasing the participation of women in peace and security programmes within a democratic governance structure was key, he said, explaining how the empowerment of women in his country was being implemented. The illicit flow and use of small arms and light weapons had been particularly devastating for women and girls. A National Commission on Small Arms had been established in order to address that issue. The Government had also established a National Committee on Gender-Based Violence. The National Action Plan specifically dealt with the prosecution and punishment of perpetrators of such violence.
EDEN CHARLES ( Trinidad and Tobago) said the seminal character of resolution 1325 (2000) could not be over-emphasized. The resolution highlighted the cross-cutting nature of gender consideration in all areas related to peace and security. Describing her country’s actions at the national and international level regarding the status of women, she said the prosecution of those accused of committing grave crimes against women and girls during armed conflict was key to the attainment of lasting peace. Any failure to prosecute the perpetrators of such crimes would not only contribute to a culture of impunity, but would also be at variance with resolution 1325 (2000). Her country would introduce a resolution in the First Committee on “Women, disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control”, which would emphasize the value of women as contributors to the achievement of international peace and security.
CHARLES NTWAAGAE ( Botswana), associating with the SADC, expressed concern that, despite the many activities undertaken under resolution 1325 (2000) and related resolutions — “beacons of hope for millions of women and young girls” — crimes of sexual violence persisted. Women also constituted the majority of refugees and internally displaced persons in the world, he noted, expressing optimism, however, that given collective will, an end to that crime against humanity could be achieved. He said it was crucial that women participate fully and equally at all levels of decision-making in conflict prevention and peacebuilding. Botswana attached great importance to the promotion and protection of women, guaranteeing their participation in decision-making bodies and undertaking other initiatives to protect them against violence, he said.
LESLIE KOJO CHRISTIAN ( Ghana) welcomed the achievements made in the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000), but expressed regret over the “dismal” methods for monitoring its impact. The indicators proposed by the Secretary-General would help fill that gap, but the fact that only 20 countries had adopted national action plans must also be addressed, alongside the many obstacles preventing them from doing so. For Ghana, the resolution further enhanced the country’s strong traditions in peace and security issues, as exemplified by its support for peace missions and the activities of the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre. In that context, and with the assistance of partners, Ghana had taken steps to reach the final stages of establishing a national action plan, he said.
GAREN A. NAZARIAN ( Armenia) said inclusion of women in all stages of the peace process guaranteed a more lasting and representative settlement of conflict. Some studies had indicated that women were more collaborative and thus more inclined toward mutual compromise. Women often used their role as mothers to cut across international borders and divides. That was the experience in his region when the representatives of the Armenian and Azeri women non-governmental organizations this year discussed ways of finding peaceful solutions to the Nagorno Karabakh conflict. More meetings of that kind were expected. Over the decade, particular attention had been paid to crimes against women and girls in armed conflict, including rape, trafficking, enforced prostitution and enslavement. In that regard, it was critical to ensure accountability for past and present crimes and not to grant immunity to perpetrators. Granting immunity would mean providing amnesty for future crimes.
* *** *For information media • not an official record