United Nations

A/CONF.177/20


Fourth World Conference on Women

 Distr. GENERAL
17 October 1995
ENGLISH
ORIGINAL: ARABIC/ENGLISH/ FRENCH/RUSSIAN/ SPANISH



FOURTH WORLD                                 
CONFERENCE ON WOMEN                           

Beijing, China                                
4-15 September 1995                           
                                              


                REPORT OF THE FOURTH WORLD CONFERENCE ON WOMEN*

                        (Beijing, 4-15 September 1995)


     *   The present document is a preliminary version of the report of the
Fourth World Conference on Women.  Annexes I to IV will appear in an addendum
to the present document.  The complete report will be issued as a United
Nations sales publication.


                                   CONTENTS

Chapter                                                      Page

 I.   RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE CONFERENCE ...............    4

      1. Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action ......     4

      2. Expression of thanks to the people and Government of the
         People's Republic of China .......................   136

      3. Credentials of representatives to the Fourth World
         Conference on Women .............................    137

II.   ATTENDANCE AND ORGANIZATION OF WORK ..................  138

      A. Date and place of the Conference .................   138

      B. Pre-Conference consultations .....................   138

      C. Attendance .......................................   138

      D. Opening of the Conference and election of the
         President ........................................   141

      E. Messages from Heads of State or Government .......   142

      F. Adoption of the rules of procedure ...............   142

      G. Adoption of the agenda ...........................   142

      H. Election of officers other than the President ....   143

      I. Organization of work, including the establishment of
         the Main Committee of the Conference .............   144

      J. Appointment of the members of the Credentials 
              Committee ....................................  144

III.  GENERAL EXCHANGE OF VIEWS ............................  145

IV.   REPORT OF THE MAIN COMMITTEE .........................  149

      A. Organization of work .............................   149

      B. Consideration of the draft platform for action ...   150

      C. Consideration of the draft declaration ............  156

 V.   ADOPTION OF THE BEIJING DECLARATION AND PLATFORM FOR ACTION
       .....................................................  157

      Reservations and interpretative statements on the Beijing
      Declaration and Platform for Action...................  157

VI.   REPORT OF THE CREDENTIALS COMMITTEE ..................  177

VII.  ADOPTION OF THE REPORT OF THE CONFERENCE   ...........  179

VIII. CLOSURE OF THE CONFERENCE   ..........................  180

                                   Annexes*


 I.   LIST OF DOCUMENTS

II.   OPENING STATEMENTS

III.  CLOSING STATEMENTS

IV.   STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE CONFERENCE ON THE COMMONLY UNDERSTOOD
      MEANING OF THE TERM "GENDER"

     *   To be issued as an addendum to the present document.



                                   Chapter I

                     RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE CONFERENCE


                                 Resolution 1

                 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action*

     The Fourth World Conference on Women,

     Having met in Beijing from 4 to 15 September 1995,

     1.  Adopts the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, which are
annexed to the present resolution;

     2.  Recommends to the General Assembly of the United Nations at its
fiftieth session that it endorse the Beijing Declaration and Platform for
Action as adopted by the Conference.

     *   Adopted at the 16th plenary meeting, on 15 September 1995; for the
discussion, see chapter V.

                                    Annex I

                              BEIJING DECLARATION


1.   We, the Governments participating in the Fourth World Conference on
Women,

2.   Gathered here in Beijing in September 1995, the year of the fiftieth
anniversary of the founding of the United Nations,

3.   Determined to advance the goals of equality, development and peace for
all women everywhere in the interest of all humanity,  

4.   Acknowledging the voices of all women everywhere and taking note of the
diversity of women and their roles and circumstances, honouring the women who
paved the way and inspired by the hope present in the world's youth,

5.   Recognize that the status of women has advanced in some important
respects in the past decade but that progress has been uneven, inequalities
between women and men have persisted and major obstacles remain, with serious
consequences for the well-being of all people,

6.   Also recognize that this situation is exacerbated by the increasing
poverty that is affecting the lives of the majority of the world's people, in
particular women and children, with origins in both the national and
international domains,

7.   Dedicate ourselves unreservedly to addressing these constraints and
obstacles and thus enhancing further the advancement and empowerment of women
all over the world, and agree that this requires urgent action in the spirit
of determination, hope, cooperation and solidarity, now and to carry us
forward into the next century.

     We reaffirm our commitment to:

8.   The equal rights and inherent human dignity of women and men and other
purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, to the
Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human rights
instruments, in particular the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
Discrimination against Women and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, as
well as the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women and the
Declaration on the Right to Development;

9.   Ensure the full implementation of the human rights of women and of the
girl child as an inalienable, integral and indivisible part of all human
rights and fundamental freedoms;

10.  Build on consensus and progress made at previous United Nations
conferences and summits - on women in Nairobi in 1985, on children in New York
in 1990, on environment and development in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, on human
rights in Vienna in 1993, on population and development in Cairo in 1994 and
on social development in Copenhagen in 1995 with the objective of achieving
equality, development and peace;

11.  Achieve the full and effective implementation of the Nairobi
Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women;

12.  The empowerment and advancement of women, including the right to freedom
of thought, conscience, religion and belief, thus contributing to the moral,
ethical, spiritual and intellectual needs of women and men, individually or in
community with others and thereby guaranteeing them the possibility of
realizing their full potential in society and shaping their lives in
accordance with their own aspirations.

     We are convinced that:

13.  Women's empowerment and their full participation on the basis of equality
in all spheres of society, including participation in the decision-making
process and access to power, are fundamental for the achievement of equality,
development and peace;

14.  Women's rights are human rights;

15.  Equal rights, opportunities and access to resources, equal sharing of
responsibilities for the family by men and women, and a harmonious partnership
between them are critical to their well-being and that of their families as
well as to the consolidation of democracy;

16.  Eradication of poverty based on sustained economic growth, social
development, environmental protection and social justice requires the
involvement of women in economic and social development, equal opportunities
and the full and equal participation of women and men as agents and
beneficiaries of people-centred sustainable development;

17.  The explicit recognition and reaffirmation of the right of all women to
control all aspects of their health, in particular their own fertility, is
basic to their empowerment;

18.  Local, national, regional and global peace is attainable and is
inextricably linked with the advancement of women, who are a fundamental force
for leadership, conflict resolution and the promotion of lasting peace at all
levels;

19.  It is essential to design, implement and monitor, with the full
participation of women, effective, efficient and mutually reinforcing
gender-sensitive policies and programmes, including development policies and
programmes, at all levels that will foster the empowerment and advancement of
women;

20.  The participation and contribution of all actors of civil society,
particularly women's groups and networks and other non-governmental
organizations and community-based organizations, with full respect for their
autonomy, in cooperation with Governments, are important to the effective
implementation and follow-up of the Platform for Action;

21.  The implementation of the Platform for Action requires commitment from
Governments and the international community.  By making national and
international commitments for action, including those made at the Conference,
Governments and the international community recognize the need to take
priority action for the empowerment and advancement of women.



     We are determined to:

22.  Intensify efforts and actions to achieve the goals of the Nairobi
Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women by the end of this
century;

23.  Ensure the full enjoyment by women and the girl child of all human rights
and fundamental freedoms and take effective action against violations of these
rights and freedoms;

24.  Take all necessary measures to eliminate all forms of discrimination
against women and the girl child and remove all obstacles to gender equality
and the advancement and empowerment of women;

25.  Encourage men to participate fully in all actions towards equality;

26.  Promote women's economic independence, including employment, and
eradicate the persistent and increasing burden of poverty on women by
addressing the structural causes of poverty through changes in economic
structures, ensuring equal access for all women, including those in rural
areas, as vital development agents, to productive resources, opportunities and
public services; 

27.  Promote people-centred sustainable development, including sustained
economic growth, through the provision of basic education, life-long
education, literacy and training, and primary health care for girls and women;

28.  Take positive steps to ensure peace for the advancement of women and,
recognizing the leading role that women have played in the peace movement,
work actively towards general and complete disarmament under strict and
effective international control, and support negotiations on the conclusion,
without delay, of a universal and multilaterally and effectively verifiable
comprehensive nuclear-test-ban treaty which contributes to nuclear disarmament
and the prevention of the proliferation of nuclear weapons in all its aspects;

29.  Prevent and eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls;

30.  Ensure equal access to and equal treatment of women and men in education
and health care and enhance women's sexual and reproductive health as well as
education;

31.  Promote and protect all human rights of women and girls;

32.  Intensify efforts to ensure equal enjoyment of all human rights and
fundamental freedoms for all women and girls who face multiple barriers to
their empowerment and advancement because of such factors as their race, age,
language, ethnicity, culture, religion, or disability, or because they are
indigenous people;

33.  Ensure respect for international law, including humanitarian law, in
order to protect women and girls in particular;

34.  Develop the fullest potential of girls and women of all ages, ensure
their full and equal participation in building a better world for all and
enhance their role in the development process.

     We are determined to:

35.  Ensure women's equal access to economic resources, including land,
credit, science and technology, vocational training, information,
communication and markets, as a means to further the advancement and
empowerment of women and girls, including through the enhancement of their
capacities to enjoy the benefits of equal access to these resources, inter
alia, by means of international cooperation;

36.  Ensure the success of the Platform for Action, which will require a
strong commitment on the part of Governments, international organizations and
institutions at all levels.  We are deeply convinced that economic
development, social development and environmental protection are
interdependent and mutually reinforcing components of sustainable development,
which is the framework for our efforts to achieve a higher quality of life for
all people.  Equitable social development that recognizes empowering the poor,
particularly women living in poverty, to utilize environmental resources
sustainably is a necessary foundation for sustainable development.  We also
recognize that broad-based and sustained economic growth in the context of
sustainable development is necessary to sustain social development and social
justice.  The success of the Platform for Action will also require adequate
mobilization of resources at the national and international levels as well as
new and additional resources to the developing countries from all available
funding mechanisms, including multilateral, bilateral and private sources for
the advancement of women; financial resources to strengthen the capacity of
national, subregional, regional and international institutions; a commitment
to     equal rights, equal responsibilities and equal opportunities and to the
equal participation of women and men in all national, regional and
international bodies and policy-making processes; and the establishment or
strengthening of mechanisms at all levels for accountability to the world's
women;

37.  Ensure also the success of the Platform for Action in countries with
economies in transition, which will require continued international
cooperation and assistance;

38.  We hereby adopt and commit ourselves as Governments to implement the
following Platform for Action, ensuring that a gender perspective is reflected
in all our policies and programmes.  We urge the United Nations system,
regional and international financial institutions, other relevant regional and
international institutions and all women and men, as well as non-governmental
organizations, with full respect for their autonomy, and all sectors of civil
society, in cooperation with Governments, to fully commit themselves and
contribute to the implementation of this Platform for Action.


                                   Annex II

                              PLATFORM FOR ACTION


                                   CONTENTS

Chapter                                                       Paragraphs 
Page

 I.   MISSION STATEMENT ....................................    1 - 5      10

II.   GLOBAL FRAMEWORK .....................................    6 - 40     11

III.  CRITICAL AREAS OF CONCERN ............................   41 - 44     19

IV.   STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES AND ACTIONS .....................   45 - 285    21

      A. Women and poverty ................................    47 - 68     21

      B. Education and training of women ..................    69 - 88     29

      C. Women and health .................................    89 - 111    37

      D. Violence against women ...........................   112 - 130    51

      E. Women and armed conflict .........................   131 - 149    59

      F. Women and the economy ............................   150 - 180    68

      G. Women in power and decision-making ...............   181 - 195    82

      H. Institutional mechanisms for the advancement of
         women ............................................   196 - 209    87

      I. Human rights of women ............................   210 - 233    92

      J. Women and the media ..............................   234 - 245   102

      K. Women and the environment ........................   246 - 258   106

      L. The girl child ...................................   259 - 285   112

 V.   INSTITUTIONAL ARRANGEMENTS ...........................  286 - 344   122

      A. National level ...................................   293 - 300   123

      B. Subregional/regional level .......................   301 - 305   124

      C. International level ..............................   306 - 344   125

VI.   FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENTS ...............................  345 - 361   131

      A. National level ...................................   346 - 350   131

      B. Regional level ...................................   351 - 352   132

      C. International level ..............................   353 - 361   132


                                   Chapter I

                               MISSION STATEMENT


1.   The Platform for Action is an agenda for women's empowerment.  It aims
at accelerating the implementation of the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies
for the Advancement of Women 1/ and at removing all the obstacles to women's
active participation in all spheres of public and private life through a full
and equal share in economic, social, cultural and political decision-making. 
This means that the principle of shared power and responsibility should be
established between women and men at home, in the workplace and in the wider
national and international communities.  Equality between women and men is a
matter of human rights and a condition for social justice and is also a
necessary and fundamental prerequisite for equality, development and peace.  A
transformed partnership based on equality between women and men is a condition
for people-centred sustainable development.  A sustained and long-term
commitment is essential, so that women and men can work together for
themselves, for their children and for society to meet the challenges of the
twenty-first century.

2.   The Platform for Action reaffirms the fundamental principle set forth in
the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, 2/ adopted by the World
Conference on Human Rights, that the human rights of women and of the girl
child are an inalienable, integral and indivisible part of universal human
rights.  As an agenda for action, the Platform seeks to promote and protect
the full enjoyment of all human rights and the fundamental freedoms of all
women throughout their life cycle.

3.   The Platform for Action emphasizes that women share common concerns that
can be addressed only by working together and in partnership with men towards
the common goal of gender* equality around the world.  It respects and values
the full diversity of women's situations and conditions and recognizes that
some women face particular barriers to their empowerment.

4.   The Platform for Action requires immediate and concerted action by all
to create a peaceful, just and humane world based on human rights and
fundamental freedoms, including the principle of equality for all people of
all ages and from all walks of life, and to this end, recognizes that broad-
based and sustained economic growth in the context of sustainable development
is necessary to sustain social development and social justice.

5.   The success of the Platform for Action will require a strong commitment
on the part of Governments, international organizations and institutions at
all levels.  It will also require adequate mobilization of resources at the
national and international levels as well as new and additional resources to
the developing countries from all available funding mechanisms, including
multilateral, bilateral and private sources for the advancement of women;
financial resources to strengthen the capacity of national, subregional,
regional and international institutions; a commitment to equal rights, equal
responsibilities and equal opportunities and to the equal participation of
women and men in all national, regional and international bodies and policy-
making processes; and the establishment or strengthening of mechanisms at all
levels for accountability to the world's women.

     *   For the commonly understood meaning of the term "gender", see
annex IV to the present report.


                                  Chapter II

                               GLOBAL FRAMEWORK


6.   The Fourth World Conference on Women is taking place as the world stands
poised on the threshold of a new millennium.

7.   The Platform for Action upholds the Convention on the Elimination of All
Forms of Discrimination against Women 3/ and builds upon the Nairobi Forward-
looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women, as well as relevant
resolutions adopted by the Economic and Social Council and the General
Assembly.  The formulation of the Platform for Action is aimed at establishing
a basic group of priority actions that should be carried out during the next
five years.

8.   The Platform for Action recognizes the importance of the agreements
reached at the World Summit for Children, the United Nations Conference on
Environment and Development, the World Conference on Human Rights, the
International Conference on Population and Development and the World Summit
for Social Development, which set out specific approaches and commitments to
fostering sustainable development and international cooperation and to
strengthening the role of the United Nations to that end.  Similarly, the
Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing
States, the International Conference on Nutrition, the International
Conference on Primary Health Care and the World Conference on Education for
All have addressed the various facets of development and human rights, within
their specific perspectives, paying significant attention to the role of women
and girls.  In addition, the International Year for the World's Indigenous
People, 4/ the International Year of the Family, 5/ the United Nations Year
for Tolerance, 6/ the Geneva Declaration for Rural Women, 7/ and the
Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women 8/ have also
emphasized the issues of women's empowerment and equality.

9.   The objective of the Platform for Action, which is in full conformity
with the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and
international law, is the empowerment of all women.  The full realization of
all human rights and fundamental freedoms of all women is essential for the
empowerment of women.  While the significance of national and regional
particularities and various historical, cultural and religious backgrounds
must be borne in mind, it is the duty of States, regardless of their
political, economic and cultural systems, to promote and protect all human
rights and fundamental freedoms. 9/  The implementation of this Platform,
including through national laws and the formulation of strategies, policies,
programmes and development priorities, is the sovereign responsibility of each
State, in conformity with all human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the
significance of and full respect for various religious and ethical values,
cultural backgrounds and philosophical convictions of individuals and their
communities should contribute to the full enjoyment by women of their human
rights in order to achieve equality, development and peace.

10.  Since the World Conference to Review and Appraise the Achievements of
the United Nations Decade for Women:  Equality, Development and Peace, held at
Nairobi in 1985, and the adoption of the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies
for the Advancement of Women, the world has experienced profound political,
economic, social and cultural changes, which have had both positive and
negative effects on women.  The World Conference on Human Rights recognized
that the human rights of women and the girl child are an inalienable, integral
and indivisible part of universal human rights.  The full and equal
participation of women in political, civil, economic, social and cultural life
at the national, regional and international levels, and the eradication of all
forms of discrimination on the grounds of sex are priority objectives of the
international community.  The World Conference on Human Rights reaffirmed the
solemn commitment of all States to fulfil their obligations to promote
universal respect for, and observance and protection of, all human rights and
fundamental freedoms for all in accordance with the Charter of the United
Nations, other instruments related to human rights and international law.  The
universal nature of these rights and freedoms is beyond question.

11.  The end of the cold war has resulted in international changes and
diminished competition between the super-Powers.  The threat of a global armed
conflict has diminished, while international relations have improved and
prospects for peace among nations have increased.  Although the threat of
global conflict has been reduced, wars of aggression, armed conflicts,
colonial or other forms of alien domination and foreign occupation, civil
wars, and terrorism continue to plague many parts of the world.  Grave
violations of the human rights of women occur, particularly in times of armed
conflict, and include murder, torture, systematic rape, forced pregnancy and
forced abortion, in particular under policies of ethnic cleansing.

12.  The maintenance of peace and security at the global, regional and local
levels, together with the prevention of policies of aggression and ethnic
cleansing and the resolution of armed conflict, is crucial for the protection
of the human rights of women and girl children, as well as for the elimination
of all forms of violence against them and of their use as a weapon of war.

13.  Excessive military expenditures, including global military expenditures
and arms trade or trafficking, and investments for arms production and
acquisition have reduced the resources available for social development.  As a
result of the debt burden and other economic difficulties, many developing
countries have undertaken structural adjustment policies.  Moreover, there are
structural adjustment programmes that have been poorly designed and
implemented, with resulting detrimental effects on social development.  The
number of people living in poverty has increased disproportionately in most
developing countries, particularly the heavily indebted countries, during the
past decade.

14.  In this context, the social dimension of development should be
emphasized.  Accelerated economic growth, although necessary for social
development, does not by itself improve the quality of life of the population.

In some cases, conditions can arise which can aggravate social inequality and
marginalization.  Hence, it is indispensable to search for new alternatives
that ensure that all members of society benefit from economic growth based on
a holistic approach to all aspects of development:  growth, equality between
women and men, social justice, conservation and protection of the environment,
sustainability, solidarity, participation, peace and respect for human rights.

15.  A world-wide movement towards democratization has opened up the
political process in many nations, but the popular participation of women in
key decision-making as full and equal partners with men, particularly in
politics, has not yet been achieved.  South Africa's policy of
institutionalized racism - apartheid - has been dismantled and a peaceful and
democratic transfer of power has occurred.  In Central and Eastern Europe the
transition to parliamentary democracy has been rapid and has given rise to a
variety of experiences, depending on the specific circumstances of each
country.  While the transition has been mostly peaceful, in some countries
this process has been hindered by armed conflict that has resulted in grave
violations of human rights.

16.  Widespread economic recession, as well as political instability in some
regions, has been responsible for setting back development goals in many
countries.  This has led to the expansion of unspeakable poverty.  Of the more
than 1 billion people living in abject poverty, women are an overwhelming
majority.  The rapid process of change and adjustment in all sectors has also
led to increased unemployment and underemployment, with particular impact on
women.  In many cases, structural adjustment programmes have not been designed
to minimize their negative effects on vulnerable and disadvantaged groups or
on women, nor have they been designed to assure positive effects on those
groups by preventing their marginalization in economic and social activities. 
The Final Act of the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations 10/
underscored the increasing interdependence of national economies, as well as
the importance of trade liberalization and access to open, dynamic markets. 
There has also been heavy military spending in some regions.  Despite
increases in official development assistance (ODA) by some countries, ODA has
recently declined overall.

17.  Absolute poverty and the feminization of poverty, unemployment, the
increasing fragility of the environment, continued violence against women and
the widespread exclusion of half of humanity from institutions of power and
governance underscore the need to continue the search for development, peace
and security and for ways of assuring people-centred sustainable development. 
The participation and leadership of the half of humanity that is female is
essential to the success of that search.  Therefore, only a new era of
international cooperation among Governments and peoples based on a spirit of
partnership, an equitable, international social and economic environment, and
a radical transformation of the relationship between women and men to one of
full and equal partnership will enable the world to meet the challenges of the
twenty-first century.

18.  Recent international economic developments have had in many cases a
disproportionate impact on women and children, the majority of whom live in
developing countries.  For those States that have carried a large burden of
foreign debt, structural adjustment programmes and measures, though beneficial
in the long term, have led to a reduction in social expenditures, thereby
adversely affecting women, particularly in Africa and the least developed
countries.  This is exacerbated when responsibilities for basic social
services have shifted from Governments to women.

19.  Economic recession in many developed and developing countries, as well
as ongoing restructuring in countries with economies in transition, have had a
disproportionately negative impact on women's employment.  Women often have no
choice but to take employment that lacks long-term job security or involves
dangerous working conditions, to work in unprotected home-based production or
to be unemployed.  Many women enter the labour market in under-remunerated and
undervalued jobs, seeking to improve their household income; others decide to
migrate for the same purpose.  Without any reduction in their other
responsibilities, this has increased the total burden of work for women.

20.  Macro and micro-economic policies and programmes, including structural
adjustment, have not always been designed to take account of their impact on
women and girl children, especially those living in poverty.  Poverty has
increased in both absolute and relative terms, and the number of women living
in poverty has increased in most regions.  There are many urban women living
in poverty; however, the plight of women living in rural and remote areas
deserves special attention given the stagnation of development in such areas. 
In developing countries, even those in which national indicators have shown
improvement, the majority of rural women continue to live in conditions of
economic underdevelopment and social marginalization.

21.  Women are key contributors to the economy and to combating poverty
through both remunerated and unremunerated work at home, in the community and
in the workplace.  Growing numbers of women have achieved economic
independence through gainful employment.

22.  One fourth of all households world wide are headed by women and many
other households are dependent on female income even where men are present. 
Female-maintained households are very often among the poorest because of wage
discrimination, occupational segregation patterns in the labour market and
other gender-based barriers.  Family disintegration, population movements
between urban and rural areas within countries, international migration, war
and internal displacements are factors contributing to the rise of female-
headed households.

23.  Recognizing that the achievement and maintenance of peace and security
are a precondition for economic and social progress, women are increasingly
establishing themselves as central actors in a variety of capacities in the
movement of humanity for peace.  Their full participation in decision-making,
conflict prevention and resolution and all other peace initiatives is
essential to the realization of lasting peace.

24.  Religion, spirituality and belief play a central role in the lives of
millions of women and men, in the way they live and in the aspirations they
have for the future.  The right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion
is inalienable and must be universally enjoyed.  This right includes the
freedom to have or to adopt the religion or belief of their choice either
individually or in community with others, in public or in private, and to
manifest their religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and
teaching.  In order to realize equality, development and peace, there is a
need to respect these rights and freedoms fully.  Religion, thought,
conscience and belief may, and can, contribute to fulfilling women's and men's
moral, ethical and spiritual needs and to realizing their full potential in
society.  However, it is acknowledged that any form of extremism may have a
negative impact on women and can lead to violence and discrimination.

25.  The Fourth World Conference on Women should accelerate the process that
formally began in 1975, which was proclaimed International Women's Year by the
United Nations General Assembly.  The Year was a turning-point in that it put
women's issues on the agenda.  The United Nations Decade for Women (1976-1985)
was a world-wide effort to examine the status and rights of women and to bring
women into decision-making at all levels.  In 1979, the General Assembly
adopted the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination
against Women, which entered into force in 1981 and set an international
standard for what was meant by equality between women and men.  In 1985, the
World Conference to Review and Appraise the Achievements of the United Nations
Decade for Women:  Equality, Development and Peace adopted the Nairobi
Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women, to be implemented by
the year 2000.  There has been important progress in achieving equality
between women and men.  Many Governments have enacted legislation to promote
equality between women and men and have established national machineries to
ensure the mainstreaming of gender perspectives in all spheres of society. 
International agencies have focused greater attention on women's status and
roles.

26.  The growing strength of the non-governmental sector, particularly
women's organizations and feminist groups, has become a driving force for
change.  Non-governmental organizations have played an important advocacy role
in advancing legislation or mechanisms to ensure the promotion of women.  They
have also become catalysts for new approaches to development.  Many
Governments have increasingly recognized the important role that
non-governmental organizations play and the importance of working with them
for progress.  Yet, in some countries, Governments continue to restrict the
ability of non-governmental organizations to operate freely.  Women, through
non-governmental organizations, have participated in and strongly influenced
community, national, regional and global forums and international debates.

27.  Since 1975, knowledge of the status of women and men, respectively, has
increased and is contributing to further actions aimed at promoting equality
between women and men.  In several countries, there have been important
changes in the relationships between women and men, especially where there
have been major advances in education for women and significant increases in
their participation in the paid labour force.  The boundaries of the gender
division of labour between productive and reproductive roles are gradually
being crossed as women have started to enter formerly male-dominated areas of
work and men have started to accept greater responsibility for domestic tasks,
including child care.  However, changes in women's roles have been greater and
much more rapid than changes in men's roles.  In many countries, the
differences between women's and men's achievements and activities are still
not recognized as the consequences of socially constructed gender roles rather
than immutable biological differences.

28.  Moreover, 10 years after the Nairobi Conference, equality between women
and men has still not been achieved.  On average, women represent a mere
10 per cent of all elected legislators world wide and in most national and
international administrative structures, both public and private, they remain
underrepresented.  The United Nations is no exception.  Fifty years after its
creation, the United Nations is continuing to deny itself the benefits of
women's leadership by their underrepresentation at decision-making levels
within the Secretariat and the specialized agencies.

29.  Women play a critical role in the family.  The family is the basic unit
of society and as such should be strengthened.  It is entitled to receive
comprehensive protection and support.  In different cultural, political and
social systems, various forms of the family exist.  The rights, capabilities
and responsibilities of family members must be respected.  Women make a great
contribution to the welfare of the family and to the development of society,
which is still not recognized or considered in its full importance.  The
social significance of maternity, motherhood and the role of parents in the
family and in the upbringing of children should be acknowledged.  The
upbringing of children requires shared responsibility of parents, women and
men and society as a whole.  Maternity, motherhood, parenting and the role of
women in procreation must not be a basis for discrimination nor restrict the
full participation of women in society.  Recognition should also be given to
the important role often played by women in many countries in caring for other
members of their family.

30.  While the rate of growth of world population is on the decline, world
population is at an all-time high in absolute numbers, with current increments
approaching 86 million persons annually.  Two other major demographic trends
have had profound repercussions on the dependency ratio within families.  In
many developing countries, 45 to 50 per cent of the population is less than
15 years old, while in industrialized nations both the number and proportion
of elderly people are increasing.  According to United Nations projections, 
72 per cent of the population over 60 years of age will be living in
developing countries by the year 2025, and more than half of that population
will be women.  Care of children, the sick and the elderly is a responsibility
that falls disproportionately on women, owing to lack of equality and the
unbalanced distribution of remunerated and unremunerated work between women
and men.

31.  Many women face particular barriers because of various diverse factors
in addition to their gender.  Often these diverse factors isolate or
marginalize such women.  They are, inter alia, denied their human rights, they
lack access or are denied access to education and vocational training,
employment, housing and economic self-sufficiency and they are excluded from
decision-making processes.  Such women are often denied the opportunity to
contribute to their communities as part of the mainstream.

32.  The past decade has also witnessed a growing recognition of the distinct
interests and concerns of indigenous women, whose identity, cultural
traditions and forms of social organization enhance and strengthen the
communities in which they live.  Indigenous women often face barriers both as
women and as members of indigenous communities.

33.  In the past 20 years, the world has seen an explosion in the field of
communications.  With advances in computer technology and satellite and cable
television, global access to information continues to increase and expand,
creating new opportunities for the participation of women in communications
and the mass media and for the dissemination of information about women. 
However, global communication networks have been used to spread stereotyped
and demeaning images of women for narrow commercial and consumerist purposes. 
Until women participate equally in both the technical and decision-making
areas of communications and the mass media, including the arts, they will
continue to be misrepresented and awareness of the reality of women's lives
will continue to be lacking.  The media have a great potential to promote the
advancement of women and the equality of women and men by portraying women and
men in a non-stereotypical, diverse and balanced manner, and by respecting the
dignity and worth of the human person.

34.  The continuing environmental degradation that affects all human lives
has often a more direct impact on women.  Women's health and their livelihood
are threatened by pollution and toxic wastes, large-scale deforestation,
desertification, drought and depletion of the soil and of coastal and marine
resources, with a rising incidence of environmentally related health problems
and even death reported among women and girls.  Those most affected are rural
and indigenous women, whose livelihood and daily subsistence depends directly
on sustainable ecosystems.

35.  Poverty and environmental degradation are closely interrelated.  While
poverty results in certain kinds of environmental stress, the major cause of
the continued deterioration of the global environment is the unsustainable
patterns of consumption and production, particularly in industrialized
countries, which are a matter of grave concern and aggravate poverty and
imbalances.

36.  Global trends have brought profound changes in family survival
strategies and structures.  Rural to urban migration has increased
substantially in all regions.  The global urban population is projected to
reach 47 per cent of the total population by the year 2000.  An estimated
125 million people are migrants, refugees and displaced persons, half of whom
live in developing countries.  These massive movements of people have profound
consequences for family structures and well-being and have unequal
consequences for women and men, including in many cases the sexual
exploitation of women.

37.  According to World Health Organization (WHO) estimates, by the beginning
of 1995 the number of cumulative cases of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome
(AIDS) was 4.5 million.  An estimated 19.5 million men, women and children
have been infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) since it was
first diagnosed and it is projected that another 20 million will be infected
by the end of the decade.  Among new cases, women are twice as likely to be
infected as men.  In the early stage of the AIDS pandemic, women were not
infected in large numbers; however, about 8 million women are now infected. 
Young women and adolescents are particularly vulnerable.  It is estimated that
by the year 2000 more than 13 million women will be infected and 4 million
women will have died from AIDS-related conditions.  In addition, about
250 million new cases of sexually transmitted diseases are estimated to occur
every year.  The rate of transmission of sexually transmitted diseases,
including HIV/AIDS, is increasing at an alarming rate among women and girls,
especially in developing countries.

38.  Since 1975, significant knowledge and information have been generated
about the status of women and the conditions in which they live.  Throughout
their entire life cycle, women's daily existence and long-term aspirations are
restricted by discriminatory attitudes, unjust social and economic structures,
and a lack of resources in most countries that prevent their full and equal
participation.  In a number of countries, the practice of prenatal sex
selection, higher rates of mortality among very young girls and lower rates of
school enrolment for girls as compared with boys suggest that son preference
is curtailing the access of girl children to food, education and health care
and even life itself.  Discrimination against women begins at the earliest
stages of life and must therefore be addressed from then onwards.

39.  The girl child of today is the woman of tomorrow.  The skills, ideas and
energy of the girl child are vital for full attainment of the goals of
equality, development and peace.  For the girl child to develop her full
potential she needs to be nurtured in an enabling environment, where her
spiritual, intellectual and material needs for survival, protection and
development are met and her equal rights safeguarded.  If women are to be
equal partners with men, in every aspect of life and development, now is the
time to recognize the human dignity and worth of the girl child and to ensure
the full enjoyment of her human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the
rights assured by the Convention on the Rights of the Child, 11/ universal
ratification of which is strongly urged.  Yet there exists world-wide evidence
that discrimination and violence against girls begin at the earliest stages of
life and continue unabated throughout their lives.  They often have less
access to nutrition, physical and mental health care and education and enjoy
fewer rights, opportunities and benefits of childhood and adolescence than do
boys.  They are often subjected to various forms of sexual and economic
exploitation, paedophilia, forced prostitution and possibly the sale of their
organs and tissues, violence and harmful practices such as female infanticide
and prenatal sex selection, incest, female genital mutilation and early
marriage, including child marriage.

40.  Half the world's population is under the age of 25 and most of the
world's youth - more than 85 per cent - live in developing countries.  Policy
makers must recognize the implications of these demographic factors.  Special
measures must be taken to ensure that young women have the life skills
necessary for active and effective participation in all levels of social,
cultural, political and economic leadership.  It will be critical for the
international community to demonstrate a new commitment to the future - a
commitment to inspiring a new generation of women and men to work together for
a more just society.  This new generation of leaders must accept and promote a
world in which every child is free from injustice, oppression and inequality
and free to develop her/his own potential.  The principle of equality of women
and men must therefore be integral to the socialization process.




                                  Chapter III

                           CRITICAL AREAS OF CONCERN


41.  The advancement of women and the achievement of equality between women
and men are a matter of human rights and a condition for social justice and
should not be seen in isolation as a women's issue.  They are the only way to
build a sustainable, just and developed society.  Empowerment of women and
equality between women and men are prerequisites for achieving political,
social, economic, cultural and environmental security among all peoples.

42.  Most of the goals set out in the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies for
the Advancement of Women have not been achieved.  Barriers to women's
empowerment remain, despite the efforts of Governments, as well as
non-governmental organizations and women and men everywhere.  Vast political,
economic and ecological crises persist in many parts of the world.  Among them
are wars of aggression, armed conflicts, colonial or other forms of alien
domination or foreign occupation, civil wars and terrorism.  These situations,
combined with systematic or de facto discrimination, violations of and failure
to protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms of all women, and their
civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights, including the right to
development and ingrained prejudicial attitudes towards women and girls are
but a few of the impediments encountered since the World Conference to Review
and Appraise the Achievements of the United Nations Decade for Women: 
Equality, Development and Peace, in 1985.

43.  A review of progress since the Nairobi Conference highlights special
concerns - areas of particular urgency that stand out as priorities for
action.  All actors should focus action and resources on the strategic
objectives relating to the critical areas of concern which are, necessarily,
interrelated, interdependent and of high priority.  There is a need for these
actors to develop and implement mechanisms of accountability for all the areas
of concern.

44.  To this end, Governments, the international community and civil society,
including non-governmental organizations and the private sector, are called
upon to take strategic action in the following critical areas of concern:

     ~   The persistent and increasing burden of poverty on women

     ~   Inequalities and inadequacies in and unequal access to education and
         training

     ~   Inequalities and inadequacies in and unequal access to health care
         and related services

     ~   Violence against women

     ~   The effects of armed or other kinds of conflict on women, including
         those living under foreign occupation

     ~   Inequality in economic structures and policies, in all forms of
         productive activities and in access to resources

     ~   Inequality between men and women in the sharing of power and
         decision-making at all levels

     ~   Insufficient mechanisms at all levels to promote the advancement of
         women

     ~   Lack of respect for and inadequate promotion and protection of the
         human rights of women

     ~   Stereotyping of women and inequality in women's access to and
         participation in all communication systems, especially in the media

     ~   Gender inequalities in the management of natural resources and in
         the safeguarding of the environment

     ~   Persistent discrimination against and violation of the rights of the
         girl child


                                  Chapter IV

                       STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES AND ACTIONS


45.  In each critical area of concern, the problem is diagnosed and strategic
objectives are proposed with concrete actions to be taken by various actors in
order to achieve those objectives.  The strategic objectives are derived from
the critical areas of concern and specific actions to be taken to achieve them
cut across the boundaries of equality, development and peace - the goals of
the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women - and
reflect their interdependence.  The objectives and actions are interlinked, of
high priority and mutually reinforcing.  The Platform for Action is intended
to improve the situation of all women, without exception, who often face
similar barriers, while special attention should be given to groups that are
the most disadvantaged.

46.  The Platform for Action recognizes that women face barriers to full
equality and advancement because of such factors as their race, age, language,
ethnicity, culture, religion or disability, because they are indigenous women
or because of other status.  Many women encounter specific obstacles related
to their family status, particularly as single parents; and to their socio-
economic status, including their living conditions in rural, isolated or
impoverished areas.  Additional barriers also exist for refugee women, other
displaced women, including internally displaced women as well as for immigrant
women and migrant women, including women migrant workers.  Many women are also
particularly affected by environmental disasters, serious and infectious
diseases and various forms of violence against women.


                             A.  Women and poverty

47.  More than 1 billion people in the world today, the great majority of
whom are women, live in unacceptable conditions of poverty, mostly in the
developing countries.  Poverty has various causes, including structural ones. 
Poverty is a complex, multidimensional problem, with origins in both the
national and international domains.  The globalization of the world's economy
and the deepening interdependence among nations present challenges and
opportunities for sustained economic growth and development, as well as risks
and uncertainties for the future of the world economy.  The uncertain global
economic climate has been accompanied by economic restructuring as well as, in
a certain number of countries, persistent, unmanageable levels of external
debt and structural adjustment programmes.  In addition, all types of
conflict, displacement of people and environmental degradation have undermined
the capacity of Governments to meet the basic needs of their populations. 
Transformations in the world economy are profoundly changing the parameters of
social development in all countries.  One significant trend has been the
increased poverty of women, the extent of which varies from region to region. 
The gender disparities in economic power-sharing are also an important
contributing factor to the poverty of women.  Migration and consequent changes
in family structures have placed additional burdens on women, especially those
who provide for several dependants.  Macroeconomic policies need rethinking
and reformulation to address such trends.  These policies focus almost
exclusively on the formal sector.  They also tend to impede the initiatives of
women and fail to consider the differential impact on women and men.  The
application of gender analysis to a wide range of policies and programmes is
therefore critical to poverty reduction strategies.  In order to eradicate
poverty and achieve sustainable development, women and men must participate
fully and equally in the formulation of macroeconomic and social policies and
strategies for the eradication of poverty.  The eradication of poverty cannot
be accomplished through anti-poverty programmes alone but will require
democratic participation and changes in economic structures in order to ensure
access for all women to resources, opportunities and public services.  Poverty
has various manifestations, including lack of income and productive resources
sufficient to ensure a sustainable livelihood; hunger and malnutrition; ill
health; limited or lack of access to education and other basic services;
increasing morbidity and mortality from illness; homelessness and inadequate
housing; unsafe environments; and social discrimination and exclusion.  It is
also characterized by lack of participation in decision-making and in civil,
social and cultural life.  It occurs in all countries - as mass poverty in
many developing countries and as pockets of poverty amidst wealth in developed
countries.  Poverty may be caused by an economic recession that results in
loss of livelihood or by disaster or conflict.  There is also the poverty of
low-wage workers and the utter destitution of people who fall outside family
support systems, social institutions and safety nets.

48.  In the past decade the number of women living in poverty has increased
disproportionately to the number of men, particularly in the developing
countries.  The feminization of poverty has also recently become a significant
problem in the countries with economies in transition as a short-term
consequence of the process of political, economic and social transformation. 
In addition to economic factors, the rigidity of socially ascribed gender
roles and women's limited access to power, education, training and productive
resources as well as other emerging factors that may lead to insecurity for
families are also responsible.  The failure to adequately mainstream a gender
perspective in all economic analysis and planning and to address the
structural causes of poverty is also a contributing factor.

49.  Women contribute to the economy and to combating poverty through both
remunerated and unremunerated work at home, in the community and in the
workplace.  The empowerment of women is a critical factor in the eradication
of poverty.

50.  While poverty affects households as a whole, because of the gender
division of labour and responsibilities for household welfare, women bear a
disproportionate burden, attempting to manage household consumption and
production under conditions of increasing scarcity.  Poverty is particularly
acute for women living in rural households.

51.  Women's poverty is directly related to the absence of economic
opportunities and autonomy, lack of access to economic resources, including
credit, land ownership and inheritance, lack of access to education and
support services and their minimal participation in the decision-making
process.  Poverty can also force women into situations in which they are
vulnerable to sexual exploitation.

52.  In too many countries, social welfare systems do not take sufficient
account of the specific conditions of women living in poverty, and there is a
tendency to scale back the services provided by such systems.  The risk of
falling into poverty is greater for women than for men, particularly in old
age, where social security systems are based on the principle of continuous
remunerated employment.  In some cases, women do not fulfil this requirement
because of interruptions in their work, due to the unbalanced distribution of
remunerated and unremunerated work.  Moreover, older women also face greater
obstacles to labour-market re-entry.

53.  In many developed countries, where the level of general education and
professional training of women and men are similar and where systems of
protection against discrimination are available, in some sectors the economic
transformations of the past decade have strongly increased either the
unemployment of women or the precarious nature of their employment.  The
proportion of women among the poor has consequently increased.  In countries
with a high level of school enrolment of girls, those who leave the
educational system the earliest, without any qualification, are among the most
vulnerable in the labour market.

54.  In countries with economies in transition and in other countries
undergoing fundamental political, economic and social transformations, these
transformations have often led to a reduction in women's income or to women
being deprived of income.

55.  Particularly in developing countries, the productive capacity of women
should be increased through access to capital, resources, credit, land,
technology, information, technical assistance and training so as to raise
their income and improve nutrition, education, health care and status within
the household.  The release of women's productive potential is pivotal to
breaking the cycle of poverty so that women can share fully in the benefits of
development and in the products of their own labour.

56.  Sustainable development and economic growth that is both sustained and
sustainable are possible only through improving the economic, social,
political, legal and cultural status of women.  Equitable social development
that recognizes empowering the poor, particularly women, to utilize
environmental resources sustainably is a necessary foundation for sustainable
development.

57.  The success of policies and measures aimed at supporting or
strengthening the promotion of gender equality and the improvement of the
status of women should be based on the integration of the gender perspective
in general policies relating to all spheres of society as well as the
implementation of positive measures with adequate institutional and financial
support at all levels.


        Strategic objective A.1.  Review, adopt and maintain macroeconomic
                                  policies and development strategies that
                                  address the needs and efforts of women
                                  in poverty

Actions to be taken

58.  By Governments:

     (a) Review and modify, with the full and equal participation of women,
         macroeconomic and social policies with a view to achieving the
         objectives of the Platform for Action;

     (b) Analyse, from a gender perspective, policies and programmes -
         including those related to macroeconomic stability, structural
         adjustment, external debt problems, taxation, investments,
         employment, markets and all relevant sectors of the economy - with
         respect to their impact on poverty, on inequality and particularly
         on women; assess their impact on family well-being and conditions
         and adjust them, as appropriate, to promote more equitable
         distribution of productive assets, wealth, opportunities, income and
         services;

     (c) Pursue and implement sound and stable macroeconomic and sectoral
         policies that are designed and monitored with the full and equal
         participation of women, encourage broad-based sustained economic
         growth, address the structural causes of poverty and are geared
         towards eradicating poverty and reducing gender-based inequality
         within the overall framework of achieving people-centred sustainable
         development;

     (d) Restructure and target the allocation of public expenditures to
         promote women's economic opportunities and equal access to
         productive resources and to address the basic social, educational
         and health needs of women, particularly those living in poverty;

     (e) Develop agricultural and fishing sectors, where and as necessary, in
         order to ensure, as appropriate, household and national food
         security and food self-sufficiency, by allocating the necessary
         financial, technical and human resources;

     (f) Develop policies and programmes to promote equitable distribution of
         food within the household;

     (g) Provide adequate safety nets and strengthen State-based and
         community-based support systems, as an integral part of social
         policy, in order to enable women living in poverty to withstand
         adverse economic environments and preserve their livelihood, assets
         and revenues in times of crisis;

     (h) Generate economic policies that have a positive impact on the
         employment and income of women workers in both the formal and
         informal sectors and adopt specific measures to address women's
         unemployment, in particular their long-term unemployment;

     (i) Formulate and implement, when necessary, specific economic, social,
         agricultural and related policies in support of female-headed
         households;

     (j) Develop and implement anti-poverty programmes, including employment
         schemes, that improve access to food for women living in poverty,
         including through the use of appropriate pricing and distribution
         mechanisms;

     (k) Ensure the full realization of the human rights of all women
         migrants, including women migrant workers, and their protection
         against violence and exploitation; introduce measures for the
         empowerment of documented women migrants, including women migrant
         workers; facilitate the productive employment of documented migrant
         women through greater recognition of their skills, foreign education
         and credentials, and facilitate their full integration into the
         labour force;

     (l) Introduce measures to integrate or reintegrate women living in
         poverty and socially marginalized women into productive employment
         and the economic mainstream; ensure that internally displaced women
         have full access to economic opportunities and that the
         qualifications and skills of immigrant and refugee women are
         recognized;

     (m) Enable women to obtain affordable housing and access to land by,
         among other things, removing all obstacles to access, with special
         emphasis on meeting the needs of women, especially those living in
         poverty and female heads of household;

     (n) Formulate and implement policies and programmes that enhance the
         access of women agricultural and fisheries producers (including
         subsistence farmers and producers, especially in rural areas) to
         financial, technical, extension and marketing services; provide
         access to and control of land, appropriate infrastructure and
         technology in order to increase women's incomes and promote
         household food security, especially in rural areas and, where
         appropriate, encourage the development of producer-owned, market-
         based cooperatives;

     (o) Create social security systems wherever they do not exist, or review
         them with a view to placing individual women and men on an equal
         footing, at every stage of their lives;

     (p) Ensure access to free or low-cost legal services, including legal
         literacy, especially designed to reach women living in poverty;

     (q) Take particular measures to promote and strengthen policies and
         programmes for indigenous women with their full participation and
         respect for their cultural diversity, so that they have
         opportunities and the possibility of choice in the development
         process in order to eradicate the poverty that affects them.

59.  By multilateral financial and development institutions, including the
World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and regional development
institutions, and through bilateral development cooperation:

     (a) In accordance with the commitments made at the World Summit for
         Social Development, seek to mobilize new and additional financial
         resources that are both adequate and predictable and mobilized in a
         way that maximizes the availability of such resources and uses all
         available funding sources and mechanisms with a view to contributing
         towards the goal of poverty eradication and targeting women living
         in poverty;

     (b) Strengthen analytical capacity in order to more systematically
         strengthen gender perspectives and integrate them into the design
         and implementation of lending programmes, including structural
         adjustment and economic recovery programmes;

     (c) Find effective development-oriented and durable solutions to
         external debt problems in order to help them to finance programmes
         and projects targeted at development, including the advancement of
         women, inter alia, through the immediate implementation of the terms
         of debt forgiveness agreed upon in the Paris Club in December 1994,
         which encompassed debt reduction, including cancellation or other
         debt relief measures and develop techniques of debt conversion
         applied to social development programmes and projects in conformity
         with the priorities of the Platform for Action;

     (d) Invite the international financial institutions to examine
         innovative approaches to assisting low-income countries with a high
         proportion of multilateral debt, with a view to alleviating their
         debt burden;

     (e) Ensure that structural adjustment programmes are designed to
         minimize their negative effects on vulnerable and disadvantaged
         groups and communities and to assure their positive effects on such
         groups and communities by preventing their marginalization in
         economic and social activities and devising measures to ensure that
         they gain access to and control over economic resources and economic
         and social activities; take actions to reduce inequality and
         economic disparity;

     (f) Review the impact of structural adjustment programmes on social
         development by means of gender-sensitive social impact assessments
         and other relevant methods, in order to develop policies to reduce
         their negative effects and improve their positive impact, ensuring
         that women do not bear a disproportionate burden of transition
         costs; complement adjustment lending with enhanced, targeted social
         development lending;

     (g) Create an enabling environment that allows women to build and
         maintain sustainable livelihoods.

60.  By national and international non-governmental organizations and women's
groups:

     (a) Mobilize all parties involved in the development process, including
         academic institutions, non-governmental organizations and grass-
         roots and women's groups, to improve the effectiveness of
         anti-poverty programmes directed towards the poorest and most
         disadvantaged groups of women, such as rural and indigenous women,
         female heads of household, young women and older women, refugees and
         migrant women and women with disabilities, recognizing that social
         development is primarily the responsibility of Governments;

     (b) Engage in lobbying and establish monitoring mechanisms, as
         appropriate, and other relevant activities to ensure implementation
         of the recommendations on poverty eradication outlined in the
         Platform for Action and aimed at ensuring accountability and
         transparency from the State and private sectors;

     (c) Include in their activities women with diverse needs and recognize
         that youth organizations are increasingly becoming effective
         partners in development programmes;

     (d) In cooperation with the government and private sectors, participate
         in the development of a comprehensive national strategy for
         improving health, education and social services so that girls and
         women of all ages living in poverty have full access to such
         services; seek funding to secure access to services with a gender
         perspective and to extend those services in order to reach the rural
         and remote areas that are not covered by government institutions;

     (e) In cooperation with Governments, employers, other social partners
         and relevant parties, contribute to the development of education and
         training and retraining policies to ensure that women can acquire a
         wide range of skills to meet new demands;

     (f) Mobilize to protect women's right to full and equal access to
         economic resources, including the right to inheritance and to
         ownership of land and other property, credit, natural resources and
         appropriate technologies.


        Strategic objective A.2.  Revise laws and administrative practices
                                  to ensure women's equal rights and access
                                  to economic resources

Actions to be taken

61.  By Governments:

     (a) Ensure access to free or low-cost legal services, including legal
         literacy, especially designed to reach women living in poverty;

     (b) Undertake legislative and administrative reforms to give women full
         and equal access to economic resources, including the right to
         inheritance and to ownership of land and other property, credit,
         natural resources and appropriate technologies;

     (c) Consider ratification of Convention No. 169 of the International
         Labour Organization (ILO) as part of their efforts to promote and
         protect the rights of indigenous people.


        Strategic objective A.3.  Provide women with access to savings and
                                  credit mechanisms and institutions

Actions to be taken

62.  By Governments:

     (a) Enhance the access of disadvantaged women, including women
         entrepreneurs, in rural, remote and urban areas to financial
         services through strengthening links between the formal banks and
         intermediary lending organizations, including legislative support,
         training for women and institutional strengthening for intermediary
         institutions with a view to mobilizing capital for those
         institutions and increasing the availability of credit;

     (b) Encourage links between financial institutions and non-governmental
         organizations and support innovative lending practices, including
         those that integrate credit with women's services and training and
         provide credit facilities to rural women.

63.  By commercial banks, specialized financial institutions and the private
sector in examining their policies:

     (a) Use credit and savings methodologies that are effective in reaching
         women in poverty and innovative in reducing transaction costs and
         redefining risk;

     (b) Open special windows for lending to women, including young women,
         who lack access to traditional sources of collateral;

     (c) Simplify banking practices, for example by reducing the minimum
         deposit and other requirements for opening bank accounts;

     (d) Ensure the participation and joint ownership, where possible, of
         women clients in the decision-making of institutions providing
         credit and financial services.

64.  By multilateral and bilateral development cooperation organizations:

         Support, through the provision of capital and/or resources,
         financial institutions that serve low-income, small-scale and
         micro-scale women entrepreneurs and producers, in both the formal
         and informal sectors.

65.  By Governments and multilateral financial institutions, as appropriate:

         Support institutions that meet performance standards in reaching
         large numbers of low-income women and men through capitalization,
         refinancing and institutional development support in forms that
         foster self-sufficiency.

66.  By international organizations:

         Increase funding for programmes and projects designed to promote
         sustainable and productive entrepreneurial activities for income-
         generation among disadvantaged women and women living in poverty.


       Strategic objective A.4.  Develop gender-based methodologies and
                                 conduct research to address the
                                 feminization of poverty

Actions to be taken

67.  By Governments, intergovernmental organizations, academic and research
institutions and the private sector:

     (a) Develop conceptual and practical methodologies for incorporating
         gender perspectives into all aspects of economic policy-making,
         including structural adjustment planning and programmes;

     (b) Apply these methodologies in conducting gender-impact analyses of
         all policies and programmes, including structural adjustment
         programmes, and disseminate the research findings.

68.  By national and international statistical organizations:

     (a) Collect gender and age-disaggregated data on poverty and all aspects
         of economic activity and develop qualitative and quantitative
         statistical indicators to facilitate the assessment of economic
         performance from a gender perspective;

     (b) Devise suitable statistical means to recognize and make visible the
         full extent of the work of women and all their contributions to the
         national economy, including their contribution in the unremunerated
         and domestic sectors, and examine the relationship of women's
         unremunerated work to the incidence of and their vulnerability to
         poverty.

                      B.  Education and training of women

69.  Education is a human right and an essential tool for achieving the goals
of equality, development and peace.  Non-discriminatory education benefits
both girls and boys and thus ultimately contributes to more equal
relationships between women and men.  Equality of access to and attainment of
educational qualifications is necessary if more women are to become agents of
change.  Literacy of women is an important key to improving health, nutrition
and education in the family and to empowering women to participate in
decision-making in society.  Investing in formal and non-formal education and
training for girls and women, with its exceptionally high social and economic
return, has proved to be one of the best means of achieving sustainable
development and economic growth that is both sustained and sustainable.

70.  On a regional level, girls and boys have achieved equal access to
primary education, except in some parts of Africa, in particular sub-Saharan
Africa, and Central Asia, where access to education facilities is still
inadequate.  Progress has been made in secondary education, where equal access
of girls and boys has been achieved in some countries.  Enrolment of girls and
women in tertiary education has increased considerably.  In many countries,
private schools have also played an important complementary role in improving
access to education at all levels.  Yet, more than five years after the World
Conference on Education for All (Jomtien, Thailand, 1990) adopted the World
Declaration on Education for All and the Framework for Action to Meet Basic
Learning Needs, 12/ approximately 100 million children, including at least
60 million girls, are without access to primary schooling and more than two
thirds of the world's 960 million illiterate adults are women.  The high rate
of illiteracy prevailing in most developing countries, in particular in
sub-Saharan Africa and some Arab States, remains a severe impediment to the
advancement of women and to development.

71.  Discrimination in girls' access to education persists in many areas,
owing to customary attitudes, early marriages and pregnancies, inadequate and
gender-biased teaching and educational materials, sexual harassment and lack
of adequate and physically and otherwise accessible schooling facilities. 
Girls undertake heavy domestic work at a very early age.  Girls and young
women are expected to manage both educational and domestic responsibilities,
often resulting in poor scholastic performance and early drop-out from the
educational system.  This has long-lasting consequences for all aspects of
women's lives.

72.  Creation of an educational and social environment, in which women and
men, girls and boys, are treated equally and encouraged to achieve their full
potential, respecting their freedom of thought, conscience, religion and
belief, and where educational resources promote non-stereotyped images of
women and men, would be effective in the elimination of the causes of
discrimination against women and inequalities between women and men.

73.  Women should be enabled to benefit from an ongoing acquisition of
knowledge and skills beyond those acquired during youth.  This concept of
lifelong learning includes knowledge and skills gained in formal education and
training, as well as learning that occurs in informal ways, including
volunteer activity, unremunerated work and traditional knowledge.

74.  Curricula and teaching materials remain gender-biased to a large degree,
and are rarely sensitive to the specific needs of girls and women.  This
reinforces traditional female and male roles that deny women opportunities for
full and equal partnership in society.  Lack of gender awareness by educators
at all levels strengthens existing inequities between males and females by
reinforcing discriminatory tendencies and undermining girls' self-esteem.  The
lack of sexual and reproductive health education has a profound impact on
women and men.

75.  Science curricula in particular are gender-biased.  Science textbooks do
not relate to women's and girls' daily experience and fail to give recognition
to women scientists.  Girls are often deprived of basic education in
mathematics and science and technical training, which provide knowledge they
could apply to improve their daily lives and enhance their employment
opportunities.  Advanced study in science and technology prepares women to
take an active role in the technological and industrial development of their
countries, thus necessitating a diverse approach to vocational and technical
training.  Technology is rapidly changing the world and has also affected the
developing countries.  It is essential that women not only benefit from
technology, but also participate in the process from the design to the
application, monitoring and evaluation stages.

76.  Access for and retention of girls and women at all levels of education,
including the higher level, and all academic areas is one of the factors of
their continued progress in professional activities.  Nevertheless, it can be
noted that girls are still concentrated in a limited number of fields of
study.

77.  The mass media are a powerful means of education.  As an educational
tool the mass media can be an instrument for educators and governmental and
non-governmental institutions for the advancement of women and for
development.  Computerized education and information systems are increasingly
becoming an important element in learning and the dissemination of knowledge. 
Television especially has the greatest impact on young people and, as such,
has the ability to shape values, attitudes and perceptions of women and girls
in both positive and negative ways.  It is therefore essential that educators
teach critical judgement and analytical skills.

78.  Resources allocated to education, particularly for girls and women, are
in many countries insufficient and in some cases have been further diminished,
including in the context of adjustment policies and programmes.  Such
insufficient resource allocations have a long-term adverse effect on human
development, particularly on the development of women.

79.  In addressing unequal access to and inadequate educational
opportunities, Governments and other actors should promote an active and
visible policy of mainstreaming a gender perspective into all policies and
programmes, so that, before decisions are taken, an analysis is made of the
effects on women and men, respectively.


          Strategic objective B.1.  Ensure equal access to education

Actions to be taken

80.  By Governments:

     (a) Advance the goal of equal access to education by taking measures to
         eliminate discrimination in education at all levels on the basis of
         gender, race, language, religion, national origin, age or
         disability, or any other form of discrimination and, as appropriate,
         consider establishing procedures to address grievances;

     (b) By the year 2000, provide universal access to basic education and
         ensure completion of primary education by at least 80 per cent of
         primary school-age children; close the gender gap in primary and
         secondary school education by the year 2005; provide universal
         primary education in all countries before the year 2015;

     (c) Eliminate gender disparities in access to all areas of tertiary
         education by ensuring that women have equal access to career
         development, training, scholarships and fellowships, and by adopting
         positive action when appropriate;

     (d) Create a gender-sensitive educational system in order to ensure
         equal educational and training opportunities and full and equal
         participation of women in educational administration and policy- and
         decision-making;

     (e) Provide - in collaboration with parents, non-governmental
         organizations, including youth organizations, communities and the
         private sector - young women with academic and technical training,
         career planning, leadership and social skills and work experience to
         prepare them to participate fully in society;

     (f) Increase enrolment and retention rates of girls by allocating
         appropriate budgetary resources; by enlisting the support of parents
         and the community, as well as through campaigns, flexible school
         schedules, incentives, scholarships and other means to minimize the
         costs of girls' education to their families and to facilitate
         parents' ability to choose education for the girl child; and by
         ensuring that the rights of women and girls to freedom of conscience
         and religion are respected in educational institutions through
         repealing any discriminatory laws or legislation based on religion,
         race or culture;

     (g) Promote an educational setting that eliminates all barriers that
         impeded the schooling of pregnant adolescents and young mothers,
         including, as appropriate, affordable and physically accessible
         child-care facilities and parental education to encourage those who
         are responsible for the care of their children and siblings during
         their school years, to return to or continue with and complete
         schooling;

     (h) Improve the quality of education and equal opportunities for women
         and men in terms of access in order to ensure that women of all ages
         can acquire the knowledge, capacities, aptitudes, skills and ethical
         values needed to develop and to participate fully under equal
         conditions in the process of social, economic and political
         development;

     (i) Make available non-discriminatory and gender-sensitive professional
         school counselling and career education programmes to encourage
         girls to pursue academic and technical curricula in order to widen
         their future career opportunities;

     (j) Encourage ratification of the International Covenant on Economic,
         Social and Cultural Rights 13/ where they have not already done so.




          Strategic objective B.2.  Eradicate illiteracy among women

Actions to be taken

81.  By Governments, national, regional and international bodies, bilateral
and multilateral donors and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Reduce the female illiteracy rate to at least half its 1990 level,
         with emphasis on rural women, migrant, refugee and internally
         displaced women and women with disabilities;

     (b) Provide universal access to, and seek to ensure gender equality in
         the completion of, primary education for girls by the year 2000;

     (c) Eliminate the gender gap in basic and functional literacy, as
         recommended in the World Declaration on Education for All (Jomtien);

     (d) Narrow the disparities between developed and developing countries;

     (e) Encourage adult and family engagement in learning to promote total
         literacy for all people;

     (f) Promote, together with literacy, life skills and scientific and
         technological knowledge and work towards an expansion of the
         definition of literacy, taking into account current targets and
         benchmarks.


          Strategic objective B.3.  Improve women's access to vocational
                                    training, science and technology, and
                                    continuing education

Actions to be taken

82.  By Governments, in cooperation with employers, workers and trade unions,
international and non-governmental organizations, including women's and youth
organizations, and educational institutions:

     (a) Develop and implement education, training and retraining policies
         for women, especially young women and women re-entering the labour
         market, to provide skills to meet the needs of a changing socio-
         economic context for improving their employment opportunities;

     (b) Provide recognition to non-formal educational opportunities for
         girls and women in the educational system;

     (c) Provide information to women and girls on the availability and
         benefits of vocational training, training programmes in science and
         technology and programmes of continuing education;

     (d) Design educational and training programmes for women who are
         unemployed in order to provide them with new knowledge and skills
         that will enhance and broaden their employment opportunities,
         including self-employment, and development of their entrepreneurial
         skills;

     (e) Diversify vocational and technical training and improve access for
         and retention of girls and women in education and vocational
         training in such fields as science, mathematics, engineering,
         environmental sciences and technology, information technology and
         high technology, as well as management training;

     (f) Promote women's central role in food and agricultural research,
         extension and education programmes;

     (g) Encourage the adaptation of curricula and teaching materials,
         encourage a supportive training environment and take positive
         measures to promote training for the full range of occupational
         choices of non-traditional careers for women and men, including the
         development of multidisciplinary courses for science and mathematics
         teachers to sensitize them to the relevance of science and
         technology to women's lives;

     (h) Develop curricula and teaching materials and formulate and take
         positive measures to ensure women better access to and participation
         in technical and scientific areas, especially areas where they are
         not represented or are underrepresented;

     (i) Develop policies and programmes to encourage women to participate in
         all apprenticeship programmes;

     (j) Increase training in technical, managerial, agricultural extension
         and marketing areas for women in agriculture, fisheries, industry
         and business, arts and crafts, to increase income-generating
         opportunities, women's participation in economic decision-making, in
         particular through women's organizations at the grass-roots level,
         and their contribution to production, marketing, business, and
         science and technology;

     (k) Ensure access to quality education and training at all appropriate
         levels for adult women with little or no education, for women with
         disabilities and for documented migrant, refugee and displaced women
         to improve their work opportunities.


          Strategic objective B.4.  Develop non-discriminatory education
                                    and training

Actions to be taken

83.  By Governments, educational authorities and other educational and
academic institutions:

     (a) Elaborate recommendations and develop curricula, textbooks and
         teaching aids free of gender-based stereotypes for all levels of
         education, including teacher training, in association with all
         concerned - publishers, teachers, public authorities and parents'
         associations;

     (b) Develop training programmes and materials for teachers and educators
         that raise awareness about the status, role and contribution of
         women and men in the family, as defined in paragraph 29 above, and
         society; in this context, promote equality, cooperation, mutual
         respect and shared responsibilities between girls and boys from pre-
         school level onward and develop, in particular, educational modules
         to ensure that boys have the skills necessary to take care of their
         own domestic needs and to share responsibility for their household
         and for the care of dependants;

     (c) Develop training programmes and materials for teachers and educators
         that raise awareness of their own role in the educational process,
         with a view to providing them with effective strategies for gender-
         sensitive teaching;

     (d) Take actions to ensure that female teachers and professors have the
         same opportunities as and equal status with male teachers and
         professors, in view of the importance of having female teachers at
         all levels and in order to attract girls to school and retain them
         in school;

     (e) Introduce and promote training in peaceful conflict resolution;

     (f) Take positive measures to increase the proportion of women gaining
         access to educational policy- and decision-making, particularly
         women teachers at all levels of education and in academic
         disciplines that are traditionally male-dominated, such as the
         scientific and technological fields;

     (g) Support and develop gender studies and research at all levels of
         education, especially at the postgraduate level of academic
         institutions, and apply them in the development of curricula,
         including university curricula, textbooks and teaching aids, and in
         teacher training;

     (h) Develop leadership training and opportunities for all women to
         encourage them to take leadership roles both as students and as
         adults in civil society;

     (i) Develop appropriate education and information programmes with due
         respect for multilingualism, particularly in conjunction with the
         mass media, that make the public, particularly parents, aware of the
         importance of non-discriminatory education for children and the
         equal sharing of family responsibilities by girls and boys;

     (j) Develop human rights education programmes that incorporate the
         gender dimension at all levels of education, in particular by
         encouraging higher education institutions, especially in their
         graduate and postgraduate juridical, social and political science
         curricula, to include the study of the human rights of women as they
         appear in United Nations conventions;

     (k) Remove legal, regulatory and social barriers, where appropriate, to
         sexual and reproductive health education within formal education
         programmes regarding women's health issues;

     (l) Encourage, with the guidance and support of their parents and in
         cooperation with educational staff and institutions, the elaboration
         of educational programmes for girls and boys and the creation of
         integrated services in order to raise awareness of their
         responsibilities and to help them to assume those responsibilities,
         taking into account the importance of such education and services to
         personal development and self-esteem, as well as the urgent need to
         avoid unwanted pregnancy, the spread of sexually transmitted
         diseases, especially HIV/AIDS, and such phenomena as sexual violence
         and abuse;

     (m) Provide accessible recreational and sports facilities and establish
         and strengthen gender-sensitive programmes for girls and women of
         all ages in education and community institutions and support the
         advancement of women in all areas of athletics and physical
         activity, including coaching, training and administration, and as
         participants at the national, regional and international levels;

     (n) Recognize and support the right of indigenous women and girls to
         education and promote a multicultural approach to education that is
         responsive to the needs, aspirations and cultures of indigenous
         women, including by developing appropriate education programmes,
         curricula and teaching aids, to the extent possible in the languages
         of indigenous people, and by providing for the participation of
         indigenous women in these processes;

     (o) Acknowledge and respect the artistic, spiritual and cultural
         activities of indigenous women;

     (p) Ensure that gender equality and cultural, religious and other
         diversity are respected in educational institutions;

     (q) Promote education, training and relevant information programmes for
         rural and farming women through the use of affordable and
         appropriate technologies and the mass media - for example, radio
         programmes, cassettes and mobile units;

     (r) Provide non-formal education, especially for rural women, in order
         to realize their potential with regard to health, micro-enterprise,
         agriculture and legal rights;

     (s) Remove all barriers to access to formal education for pregnant
         adolescents and young mothers, and support the provision of child
         care and other support services where necessary.


            Strategic objective B.5.  Allocate sufficient resources for
                                       and monitor the implementation of
                                      educational reforms

Actions to be taken

84.  By Governments:

     (a) Provide the required budgetary resources to the educational sector,
         with reallocation within the educational sector to ensure increased
         funds for basic education, as appropriate;

     (b) Establish a mechanism at appropriate levels to monitor the
         implementation of educational reforms and measures in relevant
         ministries, and establish technical assistance programmes, as
         appropriate, to address issues raised by the monitoring efforts.

85.  By Governments and, as appropriate, private and public institutions,
foundations, research institutes and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) When necessary, mobilize additional funds from private and public
         institutions, foundations, research institutes and non-governmental
         organizations to enable girls and women, as well as boys and men on
         an equal basis, to complete their education, with particular
         emphasis on under-served populations;

     (b) Provide funding for special programmes, such as programmes in
         mathematics, science and computer technology, to advance
         opportunities for all girls and women.

86.  By multilateral development institutions, including the World Bank,
regional development banks, bilateral donors and foundations:

     (a) Consider increasing funding for the education and training needs of
         girls and women as a priority in development assistance programmes;

     (b) Consider working with recipient Governments to ensure that funding
         for women's education is maintained or increased in structural
         adjustment and economic recovery programmes, including lending and
         stabilization programmes.

87.  By international and intergovernmental organizations, especially the
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, at the
global level:

     (a) Contribute to the evaluation of progress achieved, using educational
         indicators generated by national, regional and international bodies,
         and urge Governments, in implementing measures, to eliminate
         differences between women and men and boys and girls with regard to
         opportunities in education and training and the levels achieved in
         all fields, particularly in primary and literacy programmes;

     (b) Provide technical assistance upon request to developing countries to
         strengthen the capacity to monitor progress in closing the gap
         between women and men in education, training and research, and in
         levels of achievement in all fields, particularly basic education
         and the elimination of illiteracy;

     (c) Conduct an international campaign promoting the right of women and
         girls to education;

     (d) Allocate a substantial percentage of their resources to basic
         education for women and girls.


           Strategic objective B.6.  Promote life-long education and
                                      training for girls and women

Actions to be taken

88.  By Governments, educational institutions and communities:

     (a) Ensure the availability of a broad range of educational and training
         programmes that lead to ongoing acquisition by women and girls of
         the knowledge and skills required for living in, contributing to and
         benefiting from their communities and nations;

     (b) Provide support for child care and other services to enable mothers
         to continue their schooling;

     (c) Create flexible education, training and retraining programmes for
         life-long learning that facilitate transitions between women's
         activities at all stages of their lives.


                             C.  Women and health*

89.  Women have the right to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard
of physical and mental health.  The enjoyment of this right is vital to their
life and well-being and their ability to participate in all areas of public
and private life.  Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social
well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.  Women's health
involves their emotional, social and physical well-being and is determined by
the social, political and economic context of their lives, as well as by
biology.  However, health and well-being elude the majority of women.  A major
barrier for women to the achievement of the highest attainable standard of
health is inequality, both between men and women and among women in different
geographical regions, social classes and indigenous and ethnic groups.  In
national and international forums, women have emphasized that to attain
optimal health throughout the life cycle, equality, including the sharing of
family responsibilities, development and peace are necessary conditions.

90.  Women have different and unequal access to and use of basic health
resources, including primary health services for the prevention and treatment
of childhood diseases, malnutrition, anaemia, diarrhoeal diseases,
communicable diseases, malaria and other tropical diseases and tuberculosis,
among others.  Women also have different and unequal opportunities for the
protection, promotion and maintenance of their health.  In many developing
countries, the lack of emergency obstetric services is also of particular
concern.  Health policies and programmes often perpetuate gender stereotypes
and fail to consider socio-economic disparities and other differences among
women and may not fully take account of the lack of autonomy of women
regarding their health.  Women's health is also affected by gender bias in the
health system and by the provision of inadequate and inappropriate medical
services to women.

91.  In many countries, especially developing countries, in particular the
least developed countries, a decrease in public health spending and, in some
cases, structural adjustment, contribute to the deterioration of public health
systems.  In addition, privatization of health-care systems without
appropriate guarantees of universal access to affordable health care further
reduces health-care availability.  This situation not only directly affects
the health of girls and women, but also places disproportionate
responsibilities on women, whose multiple roles, including their roles within
the family and the community, are often not acknowledged; hence they do not
receive the necessary social, psychological and economic support.

92.  Women's right to the enjoyment of the highest standard of health must be
secured throughout the whole life cycle in equality with men.  Women are
affected by many of the same health conditions as men, but women experience
them differently.  The prevalence among women of poverty and economic
dependence, their experience of violence, negative attitudes towards women and
girls, racial and other forms of discrimination, the limited power many women
have over their sexual and reproductive lives and lack of influence in
decision-making are social realities which have an adverse impact on their
health.  Lack of food and inequitable distribution of food for girls and women
in the household, inadequate access to safe water, sanitation facilities and
fuel supplies, particularly in rural and poor urban areas, and deficient
housing conditions, all overburden women and their families and have a
negative effect on their health.  Good health is essential to leading a
productive and fulfilling life, and the right of all women to control all
aspects of their health, in particular their own fertility, is basic to their
empowerment.

93.  Discrimination against girls, often resulting from son preference, in
access to nutrition and health-care services endangers their current and
future health and well-being.  Conditions that force girls into early
marriage, pregnancy and child-bearing and subject them to harmful practices,
such as female genital mutilation, pose grave health risks.  Adolescent girls
need, but too often do not have, access to necessary health and nutrition
services as they mature.  Counselling and access to sexual and reproductive
health information and services for adolescents are still inadequate or
lacking completely, and a young woman's right to privacy, confidentiality,
respect and informed consent is often not considered.  Adolescent girls are
both biologically and psychosocially more vulnerable than boys to sexual
abuse, violence and prostitution, and to the consequences of unprotected and
premature sexual relations.  The trend towards early sexual experience,
combined with a lack of information and services, increases the risk of
unwanted and too early pregnancy, HIV infection and other sexually transmitted
diseases, as well as unsafe abortions.  Early child-bearing continues to be an
impediment to improvements in the educational, economic and social status of
women in all parts of the world.  Overall, for young women early marriage and
early motherhood can severely curtail educational and employment opportunities
and are likely to have a long-term, adverse impact on the quality of their
lives and the lives of their children.  Young men are often not educated to
respect women's self-determination and to share responsibility with women in
matters of sexuality and reproduction.

94.  Reproductive health is a state of complete physical, mental and social
well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, in all matters
relating to the reproductive system and to its functions and processes. 
Reproductive health therefore implies that people are able to have a
satisfying and safe sex life and that they have the capability to reproduce
and the freedom to decide if, when and how often to do so.  Implicit in this
last condition are the right of men and women to be informed and to have
access to safe, effective, affordable and acceptable methods of family
planning of their choice, as well as other methods of their choice for
regulation of fertility which are not against the law, and the right of access
to appropriate health-care services that will enable women to go safely
through pregnancy and childbirth and provide couples with the best chance of
having a healthy infant.  In line with the above definition of reproductive
health, reproductive health care is defined as the constellation of methods,
techniques and services that contribute to reproductive health and well-being
by preventing and solving reproductive health problems.  It also includes
sexual health, the purpose of which is the enhancement of life and personal
relations, and not merely counselling and care related to reproduction and
sexually transmitted diseases.

95.  Bearing in mind the above definition, reproductive rights embrace certain
human rights that are already recognized in national laws, international human
rights documents and other consensus documents.  These rights rest on the
recognition of the basic right of all couples and individuals to decide freely
and responsibly the number, spacing and timing of their children and to have
the information and means to do so, and the right to attain the highest
standard of sexual and reproductive health.  It also includes their right to
make decisions concerning reproduction free of discrimination, coercion and
violence, as expressed in human rights documents.  In the exercise of this
right, they should take into account the needs of their living and future
children and their responsibilities towards the community.  The promotion of
the responsible exercise of these rights for all people should be the
fundamental basis for government- and community-supported policies and
programmes in the area of reproductive health, including family planning.  As
part of their commitment, full attention should be given to the promotion of
mutually respectful and equitable gender relations and particularly to meeting
the educational and service needs of adolescents to enable them to deal in a
positive and responsible way with their sexuality.  Reproductive health eludes
many of the world's people because of such factors as:  inadequate levels of
knowledge about human sexuality and inappropriate or poor-quality reproductive
health information and services; the prevalence of high-risk sexual behaviour;
discriminatory social practices; negative attitudes towards women and girls;
and the limited power many women and girls have over their sexual and
reproductive lives.  Adolescents are particularly vulnerable because of their
lack of information and access to relevant services in most countries.  Older
women and men have distinct reproductive and sexual health issues which are
often inadequately addressed.

96.  The human rights of women include their right to have control over and
decide freely and responsibly on matters related to their sexuality, including
sexual and reproductive health, free of coercion, discrimination and violence.

Equal relationships between women and men in matters of sexual relations and
reproduction, including full respect for the integrity of the person, require
mutual respect, consent and shared responsibility for sexual behaviour and its
consequences.

97.  Further, women are subject to particular health risks due to inadequate
responsiveness and lack of services to meet health needs related to sexuality
and reproduction.  Complications related to pregnancy and childbirth are among
the leading causes of mortality and morbidity of women of reproductive age in
many parts of the developing world.  Similar problems exist to a certain
degree in some countries with economies in transition.  Unsafe abortions
threaten the lives of a large number of women, representing a grave public
health problem as it is primarily the poorest and youngest who take the
highest risk.  Most of these deaths, health problems and injuries are
preventable through improved access to adequate health-care services,
including safe and effective family planning methods and emergency obstetric
care, recognizing the right of women and men to be informed and to have access
to safe, effective, affordable and acceptable methods of family planning of
their choice, as well as other methods of their choice for regulation of
fertility which are not against the law, and the right of access to
appropriate health-care services that will enable women to go safely through
pregnancy and childbirth and provide couples with the best chance of having a
healthy infant.  These problems and means should be addressed on the basis of
the report of the International Conference on Population and Development, with
particular reference to relevant paragraphs of the Programme of Action of the
Conference. 14/  In most countries, the neglect of women's reproductive rights
severely limits their opportunities in public and private life, including
opportunities for education and economic and political empowerment.  The
ability of women to control their own fertility forms an important basis for
the enjoyment of other rights.  Shared responsibility between women and men in
matters related to sexual and reproductive behaviour is also essential to
improving women's health.

98.  HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, the transmission of
which is sometimes a consequence of sexual violence, are having a devastating
effect on women's health, particularly the health of adolescent girls and
young women.  They often do not have the power to insist on safe and
responsible sex practices and have little access to information and services
for prevention and treatment.  Women, who represent half of all adults newly
infected with HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, have
emphasized that social vulnerability and the unequal power relationships
between women and men are obstacles to safe sex, in their efforts to control
the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.  The consequences of HIV/AIDS
reach beyond women's health to their role as mothers and caregivers and their
contribution to the economic support of their families.  The social,
developmental and health consequences of HIV/AIDS and other sexually
transmitted diseases need to be seen from a gender perspective.

99.  Sexual and gender-based violence, including physical and psychological
abuse, trafficking in women and girls, and other forms of abuse and sexual
exploitation place girls and women at high risk of physical and mental trauma,
disease and unwanted pregnancy.  Such situations often deter women from using
health and other services.

100. Mental disorders related to marginalization, powerlessness and poverty,
along with overwork and stress and the growing incidence of domestic violence
as well as substance abuse, are among other health issues of growing concern
to women.  Women throughout the world, especially young women, are increasing
their use of tobacco with serious effects on their health and that of their
children.  Occupational health issues are also growing in importance, as a
large number of women work in low-paid jobs in either the formal or the
informal labour market under tedious and unhealthy conditions, and the number
is rising.  Cancers of the breast and cervix and other cancers of the
reproductive system, as well as infertility affect growing numbers of women
and may be preventable, or curable, if detected early.

101. With the increase in life expectancy and the growing number of older
women, their health concerns require particular attention.  The long-term
health prospects of women are influenced by changes at menopause, which, in
combination with life-long conditions and other factors, such as poor
nutrition and lack of physical activity, may increase the risk of
cardiovascular disease and  osteoporosis.  Other diseases of ageing and the
interrelationships of ageing and disability among women also need particular
attention.

102. Women, like men, particularly in rural areas and poor urban areas, are
increasingly exposed to environmental health hazards owing to environmental
catastrophes and degradation.  Women have a different susceptibility to
various environmental hazards, contaminants and substances and they suffer
different consequences from exposure to them.

103. The quality of women's health care is often deficient in various ways,
depending on local circumstances.  Women are frequently not treated with
respect, nor are they guaranteed privacy and confidentiality, nor do they
always receive full information about the options and services available. 
Furthermore, in some countries, over-medicating of women's life events is
common, leading to unnecessary surgical intervention and inappropriate
medication.

104. Statistical data on health are often not systematically collected,
disaggregated and analysed by age, sex and socio-economic status and by
established demographic criteria used to serve the interests and solve the
problems of subgroups, with particular emphasis on the vulnerable and
marginalized and other relevant variables.  Recent and reliable data on the
mortality and morbidity of women and conditions and diseases particularly
affecting women are not available in many countries.  Relatively little is
known about how social and economic factors affect the health of girls and
women of all ages, about the provision of health services to girls and women
and the patterns of their use of such services, and about the value of disease
prevention and health promotion programmes for women.  Subjects of importance
to women's health have not been adequately researched and women's health
research often lacks funding.  Medical research, on heart disease, for
example, and epidemiological studies in many countries are often based solely
on men; they are not gender specific.  Clinical trials involving women to
establish basic information about dosage, side-effects and effectiveness of
drugs, including contraceptives, are noticeably absent and do not always
conform to ethical standards for research and testing.  Many drug therapy
protocols and other medical treatments and interventions administered to women
are based on research on men without any investigation and adjustment for
gender differences.

105. In addressing inequalities in health status and unequal access to and
inadequate health-care services between women and men, Governments and other
actors should promote an active and visible policy of mainstreaming a gender
perspective in all policies and programmes, so that, before decisions are
taken, an analysis is made of the effects for women and men, respectively.


       Strategic objective C.1.  Increase women's access throughout the
                                 life cycle to appropriate, affordable
                                 and quality health care, information   
                                 and related services                   

Actions to be taken

106. By Governments, in collaboration with non-governmental organizations and
employers' and workers' organizations and with the support of international
institutions:

     (a) Support and implement the commitments made in the Programme of
         Action of the International Conference on Population and
         Development, as established in the report of that Conference and the
         Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development and Programme of Action
         of the World Summit for Social Development 15/ and the obligations
         of States parties under the Convention on the Elimination of All
         Forms of Discrimination against Women and other relevant
         international agreements, to meet the health needs of girls and
         women of all ages;

     (b) Reaffirm the right to the enjoyment of the highest attainable
         standards of physical and mental health, protect and promote the
         attainment of this right for women and girls and incorporate it in
         national legislation, for example; review existing legislation,
         including health legislation, as well as policies, where necessary,
         to reflect a commitment to women's health and to ensure that they
         meet the changing roles and responsibilities of women wherever they
         reside;

     (c) Design and implement, in cooperation with women and community-based
         organizations, gender-sensitive health programmes, including
         decentralized health services, that address the needs of women
         throughout their lives and take into account their multiple roles
         and responsibilities, the demands on their time, the special needs
         of rural women and women with disabilities and the diversity of
         women's needs arising from age and socio-economic and cultural
         differences, among others; include women, especially local and
         indigenous women, in the identification and planning of health-care
         priorities and programmes; remove all barriers to women's health
         services and provide a broad range of health-care services;

     (d) Allow women access to social security systems in equality with men
         throughout the whole life cycle;

     (e) Provide more accessible, available and affordable primary health-
         care services of high quality, including sexual and reproductive
         health care, which includes family planning information and
         services, and giving particular attention to maternal and emergency
         obstetric care, as agreed to in the Programme of Action of the
         International Conference on Population and Development;

     (f) Redesign health information, services and training for health
         workers so that they are gender-sensitive and reflect the user's
         perspectives with regard to interpersonal and communications skills
         and the user's right to privacy and confidentiality; these services,
         information and training should be based on a holistic approach;

     (g) Ensure that all health services and workers conform to human rights
         and to ethical, professional and gender-sensitive standards in the
         delivery of women's health services aimed at ensuring responsible,
         voluntary and informed consent; encourage the development,
         implementation and dissemination of codes of ethics guided by
         existing international codes of medical ethics as well as ethical
         principles that govern other health professionals;

     (h) Take all appropriate measures to eliminate harmful, medically
         unnecessary or coercive medical interventions, as well as
         inappropriate medication and over-medication of women, and ensure
         that all women are fully informed of their options, including likely
         benefits and potential side-effects, by properly trained personnel;

     (i) Strengthen and reorient health services, particularly primary health
         care, in order to ensure universal access to quality health services
         for women and girls; reduce ill health and maternal morbidity and
         achieve world wide the agreed-upon goal of reducing maternal
         mortality by at least 50 per cent of the 1990 levels by the year
         2000 and a further one half by the year 2015; ensure that the
         necessary services are available at each level of the health system
         and make reproductive health care accessible, through the primary
         health-care system, to all individuals of appropriate ages as soon
         as possible and no later than the year 2015;

     (j) Recognize and deal with the health impact of unsafe abortion as a
         major public health concern, as agreed in paragraph 8.25 of the
         Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population
         and Development; 14/

     (k) In the light of paragraph 8.25 of the Programme of Action of the
         International Conference on Population and Development, which
         states:  "In no case should abortion be promoted as a method of
         family planning.  All Governments and relevant intergovernmental and
         non-governmental organizations are urged to strengthen their
         commitment to women's health, to deal with the health impact of
         unsafe abortion 16/ as a major public health concern and to reduce
         the recourse to abortion through expanded and improved
         family-planning services.  Prevention of unwanted pregnancies must
         always be given the highest priority and every attempt should be
         made to eliminate the need for abortion.  Women who have unwanted
         pregnancies should have ready access to reliable information and
         compassionate counselling.  Any measures or changes related to
         abortion within the health system can only be determined at the
         national or local level according to the national legislative
         process.  In circumstances where abortion is not against the law,
         such abortion should be safe.  In all cases, women should have
         access to quality services for the management of complications
         arising from abortion.  Post-abortion counselling, education and
         family-planning services should be offered promptly, which will also
         help to avoid repeat abortions", consider reviewing laws containing
         punitive measures against women who have undergone illegal
         abortions;

     (l) Give particular attention to the needs of girls, especially the
         promotion of healthy behaviour, including physical activities; take
         specific measures for closing the gender gaps in morbidity and
         mortality where girls are disadvantaged, while achieving
         internationally approved goals for the reduction of infant and child
         mortality - specifically, by the year 2000, the reduction of
         mortality rates of infants and children under five years of age by
         one third of the 1990 level, or 50 to 70 per 1,000 live births,
         whichever is less; by the year 2015 an infant mortality rate below
         35 per 1,000 live births and an under-five mortality rate below 45
         per 1,000;

     (m) Ensure that girls have continuing access to necessary health and
         nutrition information and services as they mature, to facilitate a
         healthful transition from childhood to adulthood;

     (n) Develop information, programmes and services to assist women to
         understand and adapt to changes associated with ageing and to
         address and treat the health needs of older women, paying particular
         attention to those who are physically or psychologically dependent;

     (o) Ensure that girls and women of all ages with any form of disability
         receive supportive services;

     (p) Formulate special policies, design programmes and enact the
         legislation necessary to alleviate and eliminate environmental and
         occupational health hazards associated with work in the home, in the
         workplace and elsewhere with attention to pregnant and lactating
         women;

     (q) Integrate mental health services into primary health-care systems or
         other appropriate levels, develop supportive programmes and train
         primary health workers to recognize and care for girls and women of
         all ages who have experienced any form of violence especially
         domestic violence, sexual abuse or other abuse resulting from armed
         and non-armed conflict;

     (r) Promote public information on the benefits of breast-feeding;
         examine ways and means of implementing fully the WHO/UNICEF
         International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes, and
         enable mothers to breast-feed their infants by providing legal,
         economic, practical and emotional support;

     (s) Establish mechanisms to support and involve non-governmental
         organizations, particularly women's organizations, professional
         groups and other bodies working to improve the health of girls and
         women, in government policy-making, programme design, as
         appropriate, and implementation within the health sector and related
         sectors at all levels;

     (t) Support non-governmental organizations working on women's health and
         help develop networks aimed at improving coordination and
         collaboration between all sectors that affect health;

     (u) Rationalize drug procurement and ensure a reliable, continuous
         supply of high-quality pharmaceutical, contraceptive and other
         supplies and equipment, using the WHO Model List of Essential Drugs
         as a guide, and ensure the safety of drugs and devices through
         national regulatory drug approval processes;

     (v) Provide improved access to appropriate treatment and rehabilitation
         services for women substance abusers and their families;

     (w) Promote and ensure household and national food security, as
         appropriate, and implement programmes aimed at improving the
         nutritional status of all girls and women by implementing the
         commitments made in the Plan of Action on Nutrition of the
         International Conference on Nutrition, 17/ including a reduction
         world wide of severe and moderate malnutrition among children under
         the age of five by one half of 1990 levels by the year 2000, giving
         special attention to the gender gap in nutrition, and a reduction in
         iron deficiency anaemia in girls and women by one third of the 1990
         levels by the year 2000;
 
     (x) Ensure the availability of and universal access to safe drinking
         water and sanitation and put in place effective public distribution
         systems as soon as possible;

     (y) Ensure full and equal access to health-care infrastructure and
         services for indigenous women.


          Strategic objective C.2.  Strengthen preventive programmes
                                    that promote women's health     

Actions to be taken

107. By Governments, in cooperation with non-governmental organizations, the
mass media, the private sector and relevant international organizations,
including United Nations bodies, as appropriate:

     (a) Give priority to both formal and informal educational programmes
         that support and enable women to develop self-esteem, acquire
         knowledge, make decisions on and take responsibility for their own
         health, achieve mutual respect in matters concerning sexuality and
         fertility and educate men regarding the importance of women's health
         and well-being, placing special focus on programmes for both men and
         women that emphasize the elimination of harmful attitudes and
         practices, including female genital mutilation, son preference
         (which results in female infanticide and prenatal sex selection),
         early marriage, including child marriage, violence against women,
         sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, which at times is conducive to
         infection with HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases,
         drug abuse, discrimination against girls and women in food
         allocation and other harmful attitudes and practices related to the
         life, health and well-being of women, and recognizing that some of
         these practices can be violations of human rights and ethical
         medical principles;

     (b) Pursue social, human development, education and employment policies
         to eliminate poverty among women in order to reduce their
         susceptibility to ill health and to improve their health;

     (c) Encourage men to share equally in child care and household work and
         to provide their share of financial support for their families, even
         if they do not live with them;

     (d) Reinforce laws, reform institutions and promote norms and practices
         that eliminate discrimination against women and encourage both women
         and men to take responsibility for their sexual and reproductive
         behaviour; ensure full respect for the integrity of the person, take
         action to ensure the conditions necessary for women to exercise
         their reproductive rights and eliminate coercive laws and practices;

     (e) Prepare and disseminate accessible information, through public
         health campaigns, the media, reliable counselling and the education
         system, designed to ensure that women and men, particularly young
         people, can acquire knowledge about their health, especially
         information on sexuality and reproduction, taking into account the
         rights of the child to access to information, privacy,
         confidentiality, respect and informed consent, as well as the
         responsibilities, rights and duties of parents and legal guardians
         to provide, in a manner consistent with the evolving capacities of
         the child, appropriate direction and guidance in the exercise by the
         child of the rights recognized in the Convention on the Rights of
         the Child, and in conformity with the Convention on the Elimination
         of All Forms of Discrimination against Women; ensure that in all
         actions concerning children, the best interests of the child are a
         primary consideration;

     (f) Create and support programmes in the educational system, in the
         workplace and in the community to make opportunities to participate
         in sport, physical activity and recreation available to girls and
         women of all ages on the same basis as they are made available to
         men and boys;

     (g) Recognize the specific needs of adolescents and implement specific
         appropriate programmes, such as education and information on sexual
         and reproductive health issues and on sexually transmitted diseases,
         including HIV/AIDS, taking into account the rights of the child and
         the responsibilities, rights and duties of parents as stated in
         paragraph 107 (e) above;

     (h) Develop policies that reduce the disproportionate and increasing
         burden on women who have multiple roles within the family and the
         community by providing them with adequate support and programmes
         from health and social services;

     (i) Adopt regulations to ensure that the working conditions, including
         remuneration and promotion of women at all levels of the health
         system, are non-discriminatory and meet fair and professional
         standards to enable them to work effectively;

     (j) Ensure that health and nutritional information and training form an
         integral part of all adult literacy programmes and school curricula
         from the primary level;

     (k) Develop and undertake media campaigns and information and
         educational programmes that inform women and girls of the health and
         related risks of substance abuse and addiction and pursue strategies
         and programmes that discourage substance abuse and addiction and
         promote rehabilitation and recovery;

     (l) Devise and implement comprehensive and coherent programmes for the
         prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis, a condition
         that predominantly affects women;

     (m) Establish and/or strengthen programmes and services, including media
         campaigns, that address the prevention, early detection and
         treatment of breast, cervical and other cancers of the reproductive
         system;

     (n) Reduce environmental hazards that pose a growing threat to health,
         especially in poor regions and communities; apply a precautionary
         approach, as agreed to in the Rio Declaration on Environment and
         Development, adopted by the United Nations Conference on Environment
         and Development, 18/ and include reporting on women's health risks
         related to the environment in monitoring the implementation of
         Agenda 21; 19/

     (o) Create awareness among women, health professionals, policy makers
         and the general public about the serious but preventable health
         hazards stemming from tobacco consumption and the need for
         regulatory and education measures to reduce smoking as important
         health promotion and disease prevention activities;

     (p) Ensure that medical school curricula and other health-care training
         include gender-sensitive, comprehensive and mandatory courses on
         women's health;

     (q) Adopt specific preventive measures to protect women, youth and
         children from any abuse - sexual abuse, exploitation, trafficking
         and violence, for example - including the formulation and
         enforcement of laws, and provide legal protection and medical and
         other assistance.


         Strategic objective C.3.  Undertake gender-sensitive initiatives
                                   that address sexually transmitted
                                   diseases, HIV/AIDS, and sexual and
                                   reproductive health issues

Actions to be taken

108. By Governments, international bodies including relevant United Nations
organizations, bilateral and multilateral donors and non-governmental
organizations:

     (a) Ensure the involvement of women, especially those infected with
         HIV/AIDS or other sexually transmitted diseases or affected by the
         HIV/AIDS pandemic, in all decision-making relating to the
         development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of policies
         and programmes on HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases;

     (b) Review and amend laws and combat practices, as appropriate, that may
         contribute to women's susceptibility to HIV infection and other
         sexually transmitted diseases, including enacting legislation
         against those socio-cultural practices that contribute to it, and
         implement legislation, policies and practices to protect women,
         adolescents and young girls from discrimination related to HIV/AIDS;

     (c) Encourage all sectors of society, including the public sector, as
         well as international organizations, to develop compassionate and
         supportive, non-discriminatory HIV/AIDS-related policies and
         practices that protect the rights of infected individuals;

     (d) Recognize the extent of the HIV/AIDS pandemic in their countries,
         taking particularly into account its impact on women, with a view to
         ensuring that infected women do not suffer stigmatization and
         discrimination, including during travel;

     (e) Develop gender-sensitive multisectoral programmes and strategies to
         end social subordination of women and girls and to ensure their
         social and economic empowerment and equality; facilitate promotion
         of programmes to educate and enable men to assume their
         responsibilities to prevent HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted
         diseases;

     (f) Facilitate the development of community strategies that will protect
         women of all ages from HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases;
         provide care and support to infected girls, women and their families
         and mobilize all parts of the community in response to the HIV/AIDS
         pandemic to exert pressure on all responsible authorities to respond
         in a timely, effective, sustainable and gender-sensitive manner;

     (g) Support and strengthen national capacity to create and improve
         gender-sensitive policies and programmes on HIV/AIDS and other
         sexually transmitted diseases, including the provision of resources
         and facilities to women who find themselves the principal caregivers
         or economic support for those infected with HIV/AIDS or affected by
         the pandemic, and the survivors, particularly children and older
         persons;

     (h) Provide workshops and specialized education and training to parents,
         decision makers and opinion leaders at all levels of the community,
         including religious and traditional authorities, on prevention of
         HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases and on their
         repercussions on both women and men of all ages;

     (i) Give all women and health workers all relevant information and
         education about sexually transmitted diseases including HIV/AIDS and
         pregnancy and the implications for the baby, including breast-
         feeding;

     (j) Assist women and their formal and informal organizations to
         establish and expand effective peer education and outreach
         programmes and to participate in the design, implementation and
         monitoring of these programmes;

     (k) Give full attention to the promotion of mutually respectful and
         equitable gender relations and, in particular, to meeting the
         educational and service needs of adolescents to enable them to deal
         in a positive and responsible way with their sexuality;

     (l) Design specific programmes for men of all ages and male adolescents,
         recognizing the parental roles referred to in paragraph 107 (e)
         above, aimed at providing complete and accurate information on safe
         and responsible sexual and reproductive behaviour, including
         voluntary, appropriate and effective male methods for the prevention
         of HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases through,
         inter alia, abstinence and condom use;

     (m) Ensure the provision, through the primary health-care system, of
         universal access of couples and individuals to appropriate and
         affordable preventive services with respect to sexually transmitted
         diseases, including HIV/AIDS, and expand the provision of
         counselling and voluntary and confidential diagnostic and treatment
         services for women; ensure that high-quality condoms as well as
         drugs for the treatment of sexually transmitted diseases are, where
         possible, supplied and distributed to health services;

     (n) Support programmes which acknowledge that the higher risk among
         women of contracting HIV is linked to high-risk behaviour, including
         intravenous substance use and substance-influenced unprotected and
         irresponsible sexual behaviour, and take appropriate preventive
         measures;

     (o) Support and expedite action-oriented research on affordable methods,
         controlled by women, to prevent HIV and other sexually transmitted
         diseases, on strategies empowering women to protect themselves from
         sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS, and on methods of
         care, support and treatment of women, ensuring their involvement in
         all aspects of such research;

     (p) Support and initiate research which addresses women's needs and
         situations, including research on HIV infection and other sexually
         transmitted diseases in women, on women-controlled methods of
         protection, such as non-spermicidal microbicides, and on male and
         female risk-taking attitudes and practices.


          Strategic objective C.4.  Promote research and disseminate
                                    information on women's health   

Actions to be taken

109. By Governments, the United Nations system, health professions, research
institutions, non-governmental organizations, donors, pharmaceutical
industries and the mass media, as appropriate:

     (a) Train researchers and introduce systems that allow for the use of
         data collected, analysed and disaggregated by, among other factors,
         sex and age, other established demographic criteria and
         socio-economic variables, in policy-making, as appropriate,
         planning, monitoring and evaluation;

     (b) Promote gender-sensitive and women-centred health research,
         treatment and technology and link traditional and indigenous
         knowledge with modern medicine, making information available to
         women to enable them to make informed and responsible decisions;

     (c) Increase the number of women in leadership positions in the health
         professions, including researchers and scientists, to achieve
         equality at the earliest possible date;

     (d) Increase financial and other support from all sources for
         preventive, appropriate biomedical, behavioural, epidemiological and
         health service research on women's health issues and for research on
         the social, economic and political causes of women's health
         problems, and their consequences, including the impact of gender and
         age inequalities, especially with respect to chronic and
         non-communicable diseases, particularly cardiovascular diseases and
         conditions, cancers, reproductive tract infections and injuries,
         HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, domestic violence,
         occupational health, disabilities, environmentally related health
         problems, tropical diseases and health aspects of ageing;

     (e) Inform women about the factors which increase the risks of
         developing cancers and infections of the reproductive tract, so that
         they can make informed decisions about their health;

     (f) Support and fund social, economic, political and cultural research
         on how gender-based inequalities affect women's health, including
         etiology, epidemiology, provision and utilization of services and
         eventual outcome of treatment;

     (g) Support health service systems and operations research to strengthen
         access and improve the quality of service delivery, to ensure
         appropriate support for women as health-care providers and to
         examine patterns with respect to the provision of health services to
         women and use of such services by women;

     (h) Provide financial and institutional support for research on safe,
         effective, affordable and acceptable methods and technologies for
         the reproductive and sexual health of women and men, including more
         safe, effective, affordable and acceptable methods for the
         regulation of fertility, including natural family planning for both
         sexes, methods to protect against HIV/AIDS and other sexually
         transmitted diseases and simple and inexpensive methods of
         diagnosing such diseases, among others; this research needs to be
         guided at all stages by users and from the perspective of gender,
         particularly the perspective of women, and should be carried out in
         strict conformity with internationally accepted legal, ethical,
         medical and scientific standards for biomedical research;

     (i) Since unsafe abortion 16/ is a major threat to the health and life
         of women, research to understand and better address the determinants
         and consequences of induced abortion, including its effects on
         subsequent fertility, reproductive and mental health and
         contraceptive practice, should be promoted, as well as research on
         treatment of complications of abortions and post-abortion care;

     (j) Acknowledge and encourage beneficial traditional health care,
         especially that practised by indigenous women, with a view to
         preserving and incorporating the value of traditional health care in
         the provision of health services, and support research directed
         towards achieving this aim;

     (k) Develop mechanisms to evaluate and disseminate available data and
         research findings to researchers, policy makers, health
         professionals and women's groups, among others;

     (l) Monitor human genome and related genetic research from the
         perspective of women's health and disseminate information and
         results of studies conducted in accordance with accepted ethical
         standards.


           Strategic objective C.5.  Increase resources and monitor
                                     follow-up for women's health  

Actions to be taken

110. By Governments at all levels and, where appropriate, in cooperation with
non-governmental organizations, especially women's and youth organizations:

     (a) Increase budgetary allocations for primary health care and social
         services, with adequate support for secondary and tertiary levels,
         and give special attention to the reproductive and sexual health of
         girls and women and give priority to health programmes in rural and
         poor urban areas;

     (b) Develop innovative approaches to funding health services through
         promoting community participation and local financing; increase,
         where necessary, budgetary allocations for community health centres
         and community-based programmes and services that address women's
         specific health needs;

     (c) Develop local health services, promoting the incorporation of
         gender-sensitive community-based participation and self-care and
         specially designed preventive health programmes;

     (d) Develop goals and time-frames, where appropriate, for improving
         women's health and for planning, implementing, monitoring and
         evaluating programmes, based on gender-impact assessments using
         qualitative and quantitative data disaggregated by sex, age, other
         established demographic criteria and socio-economic variables;

     (e) Establish, as appropriate, ministerial and inter-ministerial
         mechanisms for monitoring the implementation of women's health
         policy and programme reforms and establish, as appropriate, high-
         level focal points in national planning authorities responsible for
         monitoring to ensure that women's health concerns are mainstreamed
         in all relevant government agencies and programmes.

111. By Governments, the United Nations and its specialized agencies,
international financial institutions, bilateral donors and the private sector,
as appropriate:

     (a) Formulate policies favourable to investment in women's health and,
         where appropriate, increase allocations for such investment;

     (b) Provide appropriate material, financial and logistical assistance to
         youth non-governmental organizations in order to strengthen them to
         address youth concerns in the area of health, including sexual and
         reproductive health;

     (c) Give higher priority to women's health and develop mechanisms for
         coordinating and implementing the health objectives of the Platform
         for Action and relevant international agreements to ensure progress.


     *   The Holy See expressed a general reservation on this section.  The
reservation is to be interpreted in terms of the statement made by the
representative of the Holy See at the 4th meeting of the Main Committee, on
14 September 1995 (see chap. V of the present report, para. 11).


                          D.  Violence against women

112. Violence against women is an obstacle to the achievement of the
objectives of equality, development and peace.  Violence against women both
violates and impairs or nullifies the enjoyment by women of their human rights
and fundamental freedoms.  The long-standing failure to protect and promote
those rights and freedoms in the case of violence against women is a matter of
concern to all States and should be addressed.  Knowledge about its causes and
consequences, as well as its incidence and measures to combat it, have been
greatly expanded since the Nairobi Conference.  In all societies, to a greater
or lesser degree, women and girls are subjected to physical, sexual and
psychological abuse that cuts across lines of income, class and culture.  The
low social and economic status of women can be both a cause and a consequence
of violence against women.

113. The term "violence against women" means any act of gender-based violence
that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological
harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or
arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or private life.


Accordingly, violence against women encompasses but is not limited to the
following:

     (a) Physical, sexual and psychological violence occurring in the family,
         including battering, sexual abuse of female children in the
         household, dowry-related violence, marital rape, female genital
         mutilation and other traditional practices harmful to women, non-
         spousal violence and violence related to exploitation;

     (b) Physical, sexual and psychological violence occurring within the
         general community, including rape, sexual abuse, sexual harassment
         and intimidation at work, in educational institutions and elsewhere,
         trafficking in women and forced prostitution;

     (c) Physical, sexual and psychological violence perpetrated or condoned
         by the State, wherever it occurs.

114. Other acts of violence against women include violation of the human
rights of women in situations of armed conflict, in particular murder,
systematic rape, sexual slavery and forced pregnancy.

115. Acts of violence against women also include forced sterilization and
forced abortion, coercive/forced use of contraceptives, female infanticide and
prenatal sex selection.

116. Some groups of women, such as women belonging to minority groups,
indigenous women, refugee women, women migrants, including women migrant
workers, women in poverty living in rural or remote communities, destitute
women, women in institutions or in detention, female children, women with
disabilities, elderly women, displaced women, repatriated women, women living
in poverty and women in situations of armed conflict, foreign occupation, wars
of aggression, civil wars, terrorism, including hostage-taking, are also
particularly vulnerable to violence.

117. Acts or threats of violence, whether occurring within the home or in the
community, or perpetrated or condoned by the State, instil fear and insecurity
in women's lives and are obstacles to the achievement of equality and for
development and peace.  The fear of violence, including harassment, is a
permanent constraint on the mobility of women and limits their access to
resources and basic activities.  High social, health and economic costs to the
individual and society are associated with violence against women.  Violence
against women is one of the crucial social mechanisms by which women are
forced into a subordinate position compared with men.  In many cases, violence
against women and girls occurs in the family or within the home, where
violence is often tolerated.  The neglect, physical and sexual abuse, and rape
of girl children and women by family members and other members of the
household, as well as incidences of spousal and non-spousal abuse, often go
unreported and are thus difficult to detect.  Even when such violence is
reported, there is often a failure to protect victims or punish perpetrators.

118. Violence against women is a manifestation of the historically unequal
power relations between men and women, which have led to domination over and
discrimination against women by men and to the prevention of women's full
advancement.  Violence against women throughout the life cycle derives
essentially from cultural patterns, in particular the harmful effects of
certain traditional or customary practices and all acts of extremism linked to
race, sex, language or religion that perpetuate the lower status accorded to
women in the family, the workplace, the community and society.  Violence
against women is exacerbated by social pressures, notably the shame of
denouncing certain acts that have been perpetrated against women; women's lack
of access to legal information, aid or protection; the lack of laws that
effectively prohibit violence against women; failure to reform existing laws;
inadequate efforts on the part of public authorities to promote awareness of
and enforce existing laws; and the absence of educational and other means to
address the causes and consequences of violence.  Images in the media of
violence against women, in particular those that depict rape or sexual slavery
as well as the use of women and girls as sex objects, including pornography,
are factors contributing to the continued prevalence of such violence,
adversely influencing the community at large, in particular children and young
people.

119. Developing a holistic and multidisciplinary approach to the challenging
task of promoting families, communities and States that are free of violence
against women is necessary and achievable.  Equality, partnership between
women and men and respect for human dignity must permeate all stages of the
socialization process.  Educational systems should promote self-respect,
mutual respect, and cooperation between women and men.

120. The absence of adequate gender-disaggregated data and statistics on the
incidence of violence makes the elaboration of programmes and monitoring of
changes difficult.  Lack of or inadequate documentation and research on
domestic violence, sexual harassment and violence against women and girls in
private and in public, including the workplace, impede efforts to design
specific intervention strategies.  Experience in a number of countries shows
that women and men can be mobilized to overcome violence in all its forms and
that effective public measures can be taken to address both the causes and the
consequences of violence.  Men's groups mobilizing against gender violence are
necessary allies for change.

121. Women may be vulnerable to violence perpetrated by persons in positions
of authority in both conflict and non-conflict situations.  Training of all
officials in humanitarian and human rights law and the punishment of
perpetrators of violent acts against women would help to ensure that such
violence does not take place at the hands of public officials in whom women
should be able to place trust, including police and prison officials and
security forces.

122. The effective suppression of trafficking in women and girls for the sex
trade is a matter of pressing international concern.  Implementation of the
1949 Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the
Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others, 20/ as well as other relevant
instruments, needs to be reviewed and strengthened.  The use of women in
international prostitution and trafficking networks has become a major focus
of international organized crime.  The Special Rapporteur of the Commission on
Human Rights on violence against women, who has explored these acts as an
additional cause of the violation of the human rights and fundamental freedoms
of women and girls, is invited to address, within her mandate and as a matter
of urgency, the issue of international trafficking for the purposes of the sex
trade, as well as the issues of forced prostitution, rape, sexual abuse and
sex tourism.  Women and girls who are victims of this international trade are
at an increased risk of further violence, as well as unwanted pregnancy and
sexually transmitted infection, including infection with HIV/AIDS.

123. In addressing violence against women, Governments and other actors
should promote an active and visible policy of mainstreaming a gender
perspective in all policies and programmes so that before decisions are taken
an analysis may be made of their effects on women and men, respectively.


         Strategic objective D.1.  Take integrated measures to prevent and
                                   eliminate violence against women

Actions to be taken

124. By Governments:

     (a) Condemn violence against women and refrain from invoking any custom,
         tradition or religious consideration to avoid their obligations with
         respect to its elimination as set out in the Declaration on the
         Elimination of Violence against Women;

     (b) Refrain from engaging in violence against women and exercise due
         diligence to prevent, investigate and, in accordance with national
         legislation, punish acts of violence against women, whether those
         acts are perpetrated by the State or by private persons;

     (c) Enact and/or reinforce penal, civil, labour and administrative
         sanctions in domestic legislation to punish and redress the wrongs
         done to women and girls who are subjected to any form of violence,
         whether in the home, the workplace, the community or society;

     (d) Adopt and/or implement and periodically review and analyse
         legislation to ensure its effectiveness in eliminating violence
         against women, emphasizing the prevention of violence and the
         prosecution of offenders; take measures to ensure the protection of
         women subjected to violence, access to just and effective remedies,
         including compensation and indemnification and healing of victims,
         and rehabilitation of perpetrators;

     (e) Work actively to ratify and/or implement international human rights
         norms and instruments as they relate to violence against women,
         including those contained in the Universal Declaration of Human
         Rights, 21/ the International Covenant on Civil and Political
         Rights, 13/ the International Covenant on Economic, Social and
         Cultural Rights, 13/ and the Convention against Torture and Other
         Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment; 22/

     (f) Implement the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
         Discrimination against Women, taking into account general
         recommendation 19, adopted by the Committee on the Elimination of
         Discrimination against Women at its eleventh session; 23/

     (g) Promote an active and visible policy of mainstreaming a gender
         perspective in all policies and programmes related to violence
         against women; actively encourage, support and implement measures
         and programmes aimed at increasing the knowledge and understanding
         of the causes, consequences and mechanisms of violence against women
         among those responsible for implementing these policies, such as law
         enforcement officers, police personnel and judicial, medical and
         social workers, as well as those who deal with minority, migration
         and refugee issues, and develop strategies to ensure that the
         revictimization of women victims of violence does not occur because
         of gender-insensitive laws or judicial or enforcement practices;

     (h) Provide women who are subjected to violence with access to the
         mechanisms of justice and, as provided for by national legislation,
         to just and effective remedies for the harm they have suffered and
         inform women of their rights in seeking redress through such
         mechanisms;

     (i) Enact and enforce legislation against the perpetrators of practices
         and acts of violence against women, such as female genital
         mutilation, female infanticide, prenatal sex selection and dowry-
         related violence, and give vigorous support to the efforts of
         non-governmental and community organizations to eliminate such
         practices;

     (j) Formulate and implement, at all appropriate levels, plans of action
         to eliminate violence against women;

     (k) Adopt all appropriate measures, especially in the field of
         education, to modify the social and cultural patterns of conduct of
         men and women, and to eliminate prejudices, customary practices and
         all other practices based on the idea of the inferiority or
         superiority of either of the sexes and on stereotyped roles for men
         and women;

     (l) Create or strengthen institutional mechanisms so that women and
         girls can report acts of violence against them in a safe and
         confidential environment, free from the fear of penalties or
         retaliation, and file charges;

     (m) Ensure that women with disabilities have access to information and
         services in the field of violence against women;

     (n) Create, improve or develop as appropriate, and fund the training
         programmes for judicial, legal, medical, social, educational and
         police and immigrant personnel, in order to avoid the abuse of power
         leading to violence against women and sensitize such personnel to
         the nature of gender-based acts and threats of violence so that fair
         treatment of female victims can be assured;

     (o) Adopt laws, where necessary, and reinforce existing laws that punish
         police, security forces or any other agents of the State who engage
         in acts of violence against women in the course of the performance
         of their duties; review existing legislation and take effective
         measures against the perpetrators of such violence;

     (p) Allocate adequate resources within the government budget and
         mobilize community resources for activities related to the
         elimination of violence against women, including resources for the
         implementation of plans of action at all appropriate levels;

     (q) Include in reports submitted in accordance with the provisions of
         relevant United Nations human rights instruments, information
         pertaining to violence against women and measures taken to implement
         the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women;

     (r) Cooperate with and assist the Special Rapporteur of the Commission
         on Human Rights on violence against women in the performance of her
         mandate and furnish all information requested; cooperate also with
         other competent mechanisms, such as the Special Rapporteur of the
         Commission on Human Rights on torture and the Special Rapporteur of
         the Commission on Human Rights on summary, extrajudiciary and
         arbitrary executions, in relation to violence against women;

     (s) Recommend that the Commission on Human Rights renew the mandate of
         the Special Rapporteur on violence against women when her term ends
         in 1997 and, if warranted, to update and strengthen it.

125. By Governments, including local governments, community organizations,
non-governmental organizations, educational institutions, the public and
private sectors, particularly enterprises, and the mass media, as appropriate:

     (a) Provide well-funded shelters and relief support for girls and women
         subjected to violence, as well as medical, psychological and other
         counselling services and free or low-cost legal aid, where it is
         needed, as well as appropriate assistance to enable them to find a
         means of subsistence;

     (b) Establish linguistically and culturally accessible services for
         migrant women and girls, including women migrant workers, who are 
         victims of gender-based violence;

     (c) Recognize the vulnerability to violence and other forms of abuse of
         women migrants, including women migrant workers, whose legal status
         in the host country depends on employers who may exploit their
         situation;

     (d) Support initiatives of women's organizations and non-governmental
         organizations all over the world to raise awareness on the issue of
         violence against women and to contribute to its elimination;

     (e) Organize, support and fund community-based education and training
         campaigns to raise awareness about violence against women as a
         violation of women's enjoyment of their human rights and mobilize
         local communities to use appropriate gender-sensitive traditional
         and innovative methods of conflict resolution;

     (f) Recognize, support and promote the fundamental role of intermediate
         institutions, such as primary health-care centres, family-planning
         centres, existing school health services, mother and baby protection
         services, centres for migrant families and so forth in the field of
         information and education related to abuse;

     (g) Organize and fund information campaigns and educational and training
         programmes in order to sensitize girls and boys and women and men to
         the personal and social detrimental effects of violence in the
         family, community and society; teach them how to communicate without
         violence and promote training for victims and potential victims so
         that they can protect themselves and others against such violence;

     (h) Disseminate information on the assistance available to women and
         families who are victims of violence;

     (i) Provide, fund and encourage counselling and rehabilitation
         programmes for the perpetrators of violence and promote research to
         further efforts concerning such counselling and rehabilitation so as
         to prevent the recurrence of such violence;

     (j) Raise awareness of the responsibility of the media in promoting
         non-stereotyped images of women and men, as well as in eliminating
         patterns of media presentation that generate violence, and encourage
         those responsible for media content to establish professional
         guidelines and codes of conduct; also raise awareness of the
         important role of the media in informing and educating people about
         the causes and effects of violence against women and in stimulating
         public debate on the topic.

126. By Governments, employers, trade unions, community and youth
organizations and non-governmental organizations, as appropriate:

     (a) Develop programmes and procedures to eliminate sexual harassment and
         other forms of violence against women in all educational
         institutions, workplaces and elsewhere;

     (b) Develop programmes and procedures to educate and raise awareness of
         acts of violence against women that constitute a crime and a
         violation of the human rights of women;

     (c) Develop counselling, healing and support programmes for girls,
         adolescents and young women who have been or are involved in abusive
         relationships, particularly those who live in homes or institutions
         where abuse occurs;

     (d) Take special measures to eliminate violence against women,
         particularly those in vulnerable situations, such as young women,
         refugee, displaced and internally displaced women, women with
         disabilities and women migrant workers, including enforcing any
         existing legislation and developing, as appropriate, new legislation
         for women migrant workers in both sending and receiving countries.

127. By the Secretary-General of the United Nations:

         Provide the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on
         violence against women with all necessary assistance, in particular
         the staff and resources required to perform all mandated functions,
         especially in carrying out and following up on missions undertaken
         either separately or jointly with other special rapporteurs and
         working groups, and adequate assistance for periodic consultations
         with the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against
         Women and all treaty bodies.

128. By Governments, international organizations and non-governmental
organizations:

         Encourage the dissemination and implementation of the UNHCR
         Guidelines on the Protection of Refugee Women and the UNHCR
         Guidelines on the Prevention of and Response to Sexual Violence
         against Refugees.


         Strategic objective D.2.  Study the causes and consequences of
                                   violence against women and the
                                   effectiveness of preventive measures

Actions to be taken

129. By Governments, regional organizations, the United Nations, other
international organizations, research institutions, women's and youth
organizations and non-governmental organizations, as appropriate:

     (a) Promote research, collect data and compile statistics, especially
         concerning domestic violence relating to the prevalence of different
         forms of violence against women, and encourage research into the
         causes, nature, seriousness and consequences of violence against
         women and the effectiveness of measures implemented to prevent and
         redress violence against women;

     (b) Disseminate findings of research and studies widely;

     (c) Support and initiate research on the impact of violence, such as
         rape, on women and girl children, and make the resulting information
         and statistics available to the public;

     (d) Encourage the media to examine the impact of gender role
         stereotypes, including those perpetuated by commercial
         advertisements which foster gender-based violence and inequalities,
         and how they are transmitted during the life cycle, and take
         measures to eliminate these negative images with a view to promoting
         a violence-free society.


         Strategic objective D.3.  Eliminate trafficking in women and
                                   assist victims of violence due to
                                   prostitution and trafficking

Actions to be taken

130. By Governments of countries of origin, transit and destination, regional
and international organizations, as appropriate:

     (a) Consider the ratification and enforcement of international
         conventions on trafficking in persons and on slavery;

     (b) Take appropriate measures to address the root factors, including
         external factors, that encourage trafficking in women and girls for
         prostitution and other forms of commercialized sex, forced marriages
         and forced labour in order to eliminate trafficking in women,
         including by strengthening existing legislation with a view to
         providing better protection of the rights of women and girls and to
         punishing the perpetrators, through both criminal and civil
         measures;

     (c) Step up cooperation and concerted action by all relevant law
         enforcement authorities and institutions with a view to dismantling
         national, regional and international networks in trafficking;

     (d) Allocate resources to provide comprehensive programmes designed to
         heal and rehabilitate into society victims of trafficking, including
         through job training, legal assistance and confidential health care,
         and take measures to cooperate with non-governmental organizations
         to provide for the social, medical and psychological care of the
         victims of trafficking;

     (e) Develop educational and training programmes and policies and
         consider enacting legislation aimed at preventing sex tourism and
         trafficking, giving special emphasis to the protection of young
         women and children.


                         E.  Women and armed conflict

131. An environment that maintains world peace and promotes and protects
human rights, democracy and the peaceful settlement of disputes, in accordance
with the principles of non-threat or use of force against territorial
integrity or political independence and of respect for sovereignty as set
forth in the Charter of the United Nations, is an important factor for the
advancement of women.  Peace is inextricably linked with equality between
women and men and development.  Armed and other types of conflicts and
terrorism and hostage-taking still persist in many parts of the world. 
Aggression, foreign occupation, ethnic and other types of conflicts are an
ongoing reality affecting women and men in nearly every region.  Gross and
systematic violations and situations that constitute serious obstacles to the
full enjoyment of human rights continue to occur in different parts of the
world.  Such violations and obstacles include, as well as torture and cruel,
inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment, summary and arbitrary
executions, disappearances, arbitrary detentions, all forms of racism and
racial discrimination, foreign occupation and alien domination, xenophobia,
poverty, hunger and other denials of economic, social and cultural rights,
religious intolerance, terrorism, discrimination against women and lack of the
rule of law.  International humanitarian law, prohibiting attacks on civilian
populations, as such, is at times systematically ignored and human rights are
often violated in connection with situations of armed conflict, affecting the
civilian population, especially women, children, the elderly and the disabled.

Violations of the human rights of women in situations of armed conflict are
violations of the fundamental principles of international human rights and
humanitarian law.  Massive violations of human rights, especially in the form
of genocide, ethnic cleansing as a strategy of war and its consequences, and
rape, including systematic rape of women in war situations, creating a mass
exodus of refugees and displaced persons, are abhorrent practices that are
strongly condemned and must be stopped immediately, while perpetrators of such
crimes must be punished.  Some of these situations of armed conflict have
their origin in the conquest or colonialization of a country by another State
and the perpetuation of that colonization through state and military
repression.

132. The Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in
Time of War, of 1949, and the Additional Protocols of 1977 24/ provide that
women shall especially be protected against any attack on their honour, in
particular against humiliating and degrading treatment, rape, enforced
prostitution or any form of indecent assault.  The Vienna Declaration and
Programme of Action, adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights, states
that "violations of the human rights of women in situations of armed conflict
are violations of the fundamental principles of international human rights and
humanitarian law". 25/  All violations of this kind, including in particular
murder, rape, including systematic rape, sexual slavery and forced pregnancy
require a particularly effective response.  Gross and systematic violations
and situations that constitute serious obstacles to the full enjoyment of
human rights continue to occur in different parts of the world.  Such
violations and obstacles include, as well as torture and cruel, inhuman and
degrading treatment or summary and arbitrary detention, all forms of racism,
racial discrimination, xenophobia, denial of economic, social and cultural
rights and religious intolerance.

133. Violations of human rights in situations of armed conflict and military
occupation are violations of the fundamental principles of international human
rights and humanitarian law as embodied in international human rights
instruments and in the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the Additional Protocols
thereto.  Gross human rights violations and policies of ethnic cleansing in
war-torn and occupied areas continue to be carried out.  These practices have
created, inter alia, a mass flow of refugees and other displaced persons in
need of international protection and internally displaced persons, the
majority of whom are women, adolescent girls and children.  Civilian victims,
mostly women and children, often outnumber casualties among combatants.  In
addition, women often become caregivers for injured combatants and find
themselves, as a result of conflict, unexpectedly cast as sole manager of
household, sole parent, and caretaker of elderly relatives.

134. In a world of continuing instability and violence, the implementation of
cooperative approaches to peace and security is urgently needed.  The equal
access and full participation of women in power structures and their full
involvement in all efforts for the prevention and resolution of conflicts are
essential for the maintenance and promotion of peace and security.  Although
women have begun to play an important role in conflict resolution, peace-
keeping and defence and foreign affairs mechanisms, they are still
underrepresented in decision-making positions.  If women are to play an equal
part in securing and maintaining peace, they must be empowered politically and
economically and represented adequately at all levels of decision-making.

135. While entire communities suffer the consequences of armed conflict and
terrorism, women and girls are particularly affected because of their status
in society and their sex.  Parties to conflict often rape women with impunity,
sometimes using systematic rape as a tactic of war and terrorism.  The impact
of violence against women and violation of the human rights of women in such
situations is experienced by women of all ages, who suffer displacement, loss
of home and property, loss or involuntary disappearance of close relatives,
poverty and family separation and disintegration, and who are victims of acts
of murder, terrorism, torture, involuntary disappearance, sexual slavery,
rape, sexual abuse and forced pregnancy in situations of armed conflict,
especially as a result of policies of ethnic cleansing and other new and
emerging forms of violence.  This is compounded by the life-long social,
economic and psychologically traumatic consequences of armed conflict and
foreign occupation and alien domination.

136. Women and children constitute some 80 per cent of the world's millions
of refugees and other displaced persons, including internally displaced
persons.  They are threatened by deprivation of property, goods and services
and deprivation of their right to return to their homes of origin as well as
by violence and insecurity.  Particular attention should be paid to sexual
violence against uprooted women and girls employed as a method of persecution
in systematic campaigns of terror and intimidation and forcing members of a
particular ethnic, cultural or religious group to flee their homes.  Women may
also be forced to flee as a result of a well-founded fear of persecution for
reasons enumerated in the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees
and the 1967 Protocol, including persecution through sexual violence or other
gender-related persecution, and they continue to be vulnerable to violence and
exploitation while in flight, in countries of asylum and resettlement and
during and after repatriation.  Women often experience difficulty in some
countries of asylum in being recognized as refugees when the claim is based on
such persecution.

137. Refugee, displaced and migrant women in most cases display strength,
endurance and resourcefulness and can contribute positively to countries of
resettlement or to their country of origin on their return.  They need to be
appropriately involved in decisions that affect them.

138. Many women's non-governmental organizations have called for reductions
in military expenditures world wide, as well as in international trade and
trafficking in and the proliferation of weapons.  Those affected most
negatively by conflict and excessive military spending are people living in
poverty, who are deprived because of the lack of investment in basic services.

Women living in poverty, particularly rural women, also suffer because of the
use of arms that are particularly injurious or have indiscriminate effects. 
There are more than 100 million anti-personnel land-mines scattered in 64
countries globally.  The negative impact on development of excessive military
expenditures, the arms trade, and investment for arms production and
acquisition must be addressed.  At the same time, maintenance of national
security and peace is an important factor for economic growth and development
and the empowerment of women.

139. During times of armed conflict and the collapse of communities, the role
of women is crucial.  They often work to preserve social order in the midst of
armed and other conflicts.  Women make an important but often unrecognized
contribution as peace educators both in their families and in their societies.

140. Education to foster a culture of peace that upholds justice and
tolerance for all nations and peoples is essential to attaining lasting peace
and should be begun at an early age.  It should include elements of conflict
resolution, mediation, reduction of prejudice and respect for diversity.

141. In addressing armed or other conflicts, an active and visible policy of
mainstreaming a gender perspective into all policies and programmes should be
promoted so that before decisions are taken an analysis is made of the effects
on women and men, respectively.


        Strategic objective E.1.  Increase the participation of women in
                                  conflict resolution at decision-making
                                  levels and protect women living in
                                  situations of armed and other conflicts
                                  or under foreign occupation

Actions to be taken

142. By Governments and international and regional intergovernmental
institutions:

     (a) Take action to promote equal participation of women and equal
         opportunities for women to participate in all forums and peace
         activities at all levels, particularly at the decision-making level,
         including in the United Nations Secretariat with due regard to
         equitable geographical distribution in accordance with Article 101
         of the Charter of the United Nations;

     (b) Integrate a gender perspective in the resolution of armed or other
         conflicts and foreign occupation and aim for gender balance when
         nominating or promoting candidates for judicial and other positions
         in all relevant international bodies, such as the United Nations
         International Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and for Rwanda and
         the International Court of Justice, as well as in other bodies
         related to the peaceful settlement of disputes;

     (c) Ensure that these bodies are able to address gender issues properly
         by providing appropriate training to prosecutors, judges and other
         officials in handling cases involving rape, forced pregnancy in
         situations of armed conflict, indecent assault and other forms of
         violence against women in armed conflicts, including terrorism, and
         integrate a gender perspective into their work.


        Strategic objective E.2.  Reduce excessive military expenditures
                                  and control the availability of
                                  armaments

Actions to be taken

143. By Governments:

     (a) Increase and hasten, as appropriate, subject to national security
         considerations, the conversion of military resources and related
         industries to development and peaceful purposes;

     (b) Undertake to explore new ways of generating new public and private
         financial resources, inter alia, through the appropriate reduction
         of excessive military expenditures, including global military
         expenditures, trade in arms and investment for arms production and
         acquisition, taking into consideration national security
         requirements, so as to permit the possible allocation of additional
         funds for social and economic development, in particular for the
         advancement of women;

     (c) Take action to investigate and punish members of the police,
         security and armed forces and others who perpetrate acts of violence
         against women, violations of international humanitarian law and
         violations of the human rights of women in situations of armed
         conflict;

     (d) While acknowledging legitimate national defence needs, recognize and
         address the dangers to society of armed conflict and the negative
         effect of excessive military expenditures, trade in arms, especially
         those arms that are particularly injurious or have indiscriminate
         effects, and excessive investment for arms production and
         acquisition; similarly, recognize the need to combat illicit arms
         trafficking, violence, crime, the production and use of and
         trafficking in illicit drugs, and trafficking in women and children;

     (e) Recognizing that women and children are particularly affected by the
         indiscriminate use of anti-personnel land-mines:

         (i)   Undertake to work actively towards ratification, if they have
               not already done so, of the 1981 Convention on Prohibitions or
               Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which
               May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have
               Indiscriminate Effects, particularly the Protocol on
               Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Mines, Booby Traps
               and Other Devices (Protocol II), 26/ with a view to universal
               ratification by the year 2000;

         (ii)  Undertake to strongly consider strengthening the Convention to
               promote a reduction in the casualties and intense suffering
               caused to the civilian population by the indiscriminate use of
               land-mines;

        (iii)  Undertake to promote assistance in mine clearance, notably by
               facilitating, in respect of the means of mine-clearing, the
               exchange of information, the transfer of technology and the
               promotion of scientific research;

         (iv)  Within the United Nations context, undertake to support efforts
               to coordinate a common response programme of assistance in
               de-mining without unnecessary discrimination;

         (v)   Adopt at the earliest possible date, if they have not already
               done so, a moratorium on the export of anti-personnel land-
               mines, including to non-governmental entities, noting with
               satisfaction that many States have already declared moratoriums
               on the export, transfer or sale of such mines;

         (vi)  Undertake to encourage further international efforts to seek
               solutions to the problems caused by antipersonnel land-mines,
               with a view to their eventual elimination, recognizing that
               States can move most effectively towards this goal as viable
               and humane alternatives are developed;

     (f) Recognizing the leading role that women have played in the peace
         movement:

         (i)   Work actively towards general and complete disarmament under
               strict and effective international control;

         (ii)  Support negotiations on the conclusion, without delay, of a
               universal and multilaterally and effectively verifiable
               comprehensive nuclear-test-ban treaty that contributes to
               nuclear disarmament and the prevention of the proliferation of
               nuclear weapons in all its aspects;

        (iii)  Pending the entry into force of a comprehensive nuclear-test-
               ban treaty, exercise the utmost restraint in respect of nuclear
               testing.


        Strategic objective E.3.  Promote non-violent forms of conflict
                                  resolution and reduce the incidence
                                  of human rights abuse in conflict
                                  situations 

Actions to be taken

144. By Governments:

     (a) Consider the ratification of or accession to international
         instruments containing provisions relative to the protection of
         women and children in armed conflicts, including the Geneva
         Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of
         War, of 1949, the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of
         1949 relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed
         Conflicts (Protocol I) and to the Protection of Victims of
         Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol II); 24/

     (b) Respect fully the norms of international humanitarian law in armed
         conflicts and take all measures required for the protection of women
         and children, in particular against rape, forced prostitution and
         any other form of indecent assault;

     (c) Strengthen the role of women and ensure equal representation of
         women at all decision-making levels in national and international
         institutions which may make or influence policy with regard to
         matters related to peace-keeping, preventive diplomacy and related
         activities and in all stages of peace mediation and negotiations,
         taking note of the specific recommendations of the Secretary-General
         in his strategic plan of action for the improvement of the status of
         women in the Secretariat (1995-2000) (A/49/587, sect. IV).

145. By Governments and international and regional organizations:

     (a) Reaffirm the right of self-determination of all peoples, in
         particular of peoples under colonial or other forms of alien
         domination or foreign occupation, and the importance of the
         effective realization of this right, as enunciated, inter alia, in
         the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, 2/ adopted by the
         World Conference on Human Rights;

     (b) Encourage diplomacy, negotiation and peaceful settlement of disputes
         in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, in particular
         Article 2, paragraphs 3 and 4 thereof;

     (c) Urge the identification and condemnation of the systematic practice
         of rape and other forms of inhuman and degrading treatment of women
         as a deliberate instrument of war and ethnic cleansing and take
         steps to ensure that full assistance is provided to the victims of
         such abuse for their physical and mental rehabilitation;

     (d) Reaffirm that rape in the conduct of armed conflict constitutes a
         war crime and under certain circumstances it constitutes a crime
         against humanity and an act of genocide as defined in the Convention
         on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide; 27/ take
         all measures required for the protection of women and children from
         such acts and strengthen mechanisms to investigate and punish all
         those responsible and bring the perpetrators to justice;

     (e) Uphold and reinforce standards set out in international humanitarian
         law and international human rights instruments to prevent all acts
         of violence against women in situations of armed and other
         conflicts; undertake a full investigation of all acts of violence
         against women committed during war, including rape, in particular
         systematic rape, forced prostitution and other forms of indecent
         assault and sexual slavery; prosecute all criminals responsible for
         war crimes against women and provide full redress to women victims;

     (f) Call upon the international community to condemn and act against all
         forms and manifestations of terrorism;

     (g) Take into account gender-sensitive concerns in developing training
         programmes for all relevant personnel on international humanitarian
         law and human rights awareness and recommend such training for those
         involved in United Nations peace-keeping and humanitarian aid, with
         a view to preventing violence against women, in particular;

     (h) Discourage the adoption of and refrain from any unilateral measure
         not in accordance with international law and the Charter of the
         United Nations, that impedes the full achievement of economic and
         social development by the population of the affected countries, in
         particular women and children, that hinders their well-being and
         that creates obstacles to the full enjoyment of their human rights,
         including the right of everyone to a standard of living adequate for
         their health and well-being and their right to food, medical care
         and the necessary social services.  This Conference reaffirms that
         food and medicine must not be used as a tool for political pressure;

     (i) Take measures in accordance with international law with a view to
         alleviating the negative impact of economic sanctions on women and
         children.


             Strategic objective E.4.  Promote women's contribution to
                                       fostering a culture of peace

Actions to be taken

146. By Governments, international and regional intergovernmental
institutions and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Promote peaceful conflict resolution and peace, reconciliation and
         tolerance through education, training, community actions and youth
         exchange programmes, in particular for young women;

     (b) Encourage the further development of peace research, involving the
         participation of women, to examine the impact of armed conflict on
         women and children and the nature and contribution of women's
         participation in national, regional and international peace
         movements; engage in research and identify innovative mechanisms for
         containing violence and for conflict resolution for public
         dissemination and for use by women and men;

     (c) Develop and disseminate research on the physical, psychological,
         economic and social effects of armed conflicts on women,
         particularly young women and girls, with a view to developing
         policies and programmes to address the consequences of conflicts;

     (d) Consider establishing educational programmes for girls and boys to
         foster a culture of peace, focusing on conflict resolution by
         non-violent means and the promotion of tolerance.


         Strategic objective E.5.  Provide protection, assistance and
                                   training to refugee women, other
                                   displaced women in need of
                                   international protection and
                                   internally displaced women

Actions to be taken

147. By Governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and
other institutions involved in providing protection, assistance and training
to refugee women, other displaced women in need of international protection
and internally displaced women, including the Office of the United Nations
High Commissioner for Refugees and the World Food Programme, as appropriate:

     (a) Take steps to ensure that women are fully involved in the planning,
         design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of all short-term
         and long-term projects and programmes providing assistance to
         refugee women, other displaced women in need of international
         protection and internally displaced women, including the management
         of refugee camps and resources; ensure that refugee and displaced
         women and girls have direct access to the services provided;

     (b) Offer adequate protection and assistance to women and children
         displaced within their country and find solutions to the root causes
         of their displacement with a view to preventing it and, when
         appropriate, facilitate their return or resettlement;

     (c) Take steps to protect the safety and physical integrity of refugee
         women, other displaced women in need of international protection and
         internally displaced women during their displacement and upon their
         return to their communities of origin, including programmes of
         rehabilitation; take effective measures to protect from violence
         women who are refugees or displaced; hold an impartial and thorough
         investigation of any such violations and bring those responsible to
         justice;

     (d) While fully respecting and strictly observing the principle of
         non-refoulement of refugees, take all the necessary steps to ensure
         the right of refugee and displaced women to return voluntarily to
         their place of origin in safety and with dignity, and their right to
         protection after their return;

     (e) Take measures, at the national level with international cooperation,
         as appropriate, in accordance with the Charter of the United
         Nations, to find lasting solutions to questions related to
         internally displaced women, including their right to voluntary and
         safe return to their home of origin;

     (f) Ensure that the international community and its international
         organizations provide financial and other resources for emergency
         relief and other longer-term assistance that takes into account the
         specific needs, resources and potentials of refugee women, other
         displaced women in need of international protection and internally
         displaced women; in the provision of protection and assistance, take
         all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women
         and girls in order to ensure equal access to appropriate and
         adequate food, water and shelter, education, and social and health
         services, including reproductive health care and maternity care and
         services to combat tropical diseases;

     (g) Facilitate the availability of educational materials in the
         appropriate language - in emergency situations also - in order to
         minimize disruption of schooling among refugee and displaced
         children;

     (h) Apply international norms to ensure equal access and equal treatment
         of women and men in refugee determination procedures and the
         granting of asylum, including full respect and strict observation of
         the principle of non-refoulement through, inter alia, bringing
         national immigration regulations into conformity with relevant
         international instruments, and consider recognizing as refugees
         those women whose claim to refugee status is based upon the well-
         founded fear of persecution for reasons enumerated in the 1951
         Convention 28/ and the 1967 Protocol 29/ relating to the Status of
         Refugees, including persecution through sexual violence or other
         gender-related persecution, and provide access to specially trained
         officers, including female officers, to interview women regarding
         sensitive or painful experiences, such as sexual assault;

     (i) Support and promote efforts by States towards the development of
         criteria and guidelines on responses to persecution specifically
         aimed at women, by sharing information on States' initiatives to
         develop such criteria and guidelines and by monitoring to ensure
         their fair and consistent application;

     (j) Promote the self-reliant capacities of refugee women, other
         displaced women in need of international protection and internally
         displaced women and provide programmes for women, particularly young
         women, in leadership and decision-making within refugee and returnee
         communities;

     (k) Ensure that the human rights of refugee and displaced women are
         protected and that refugee and displaced women are made aware of
         these rights; ensure that the vital importance of family
         reunification is recognized;

     (l) Provide, as appropriate, women who have been determined refugees
         with access to vocational/professional training programmes,
         including language training, small-scale enterprise development
         training and planning and counselling on all forms of violence
         against women, which should include rehabilitation programmes for
         victims of torture and trauma; Governments and other donors should
         contribute adequately to assistance programmes for refugee women,
         other displaced women in need of international protection and
         internally displaced women, taking into account in particular the
         effects on the host countries of the increasing requirements of
         large refugee populations and the need to widen the donor base and
         to achieve greater burden-sharing;

     (m) Raise public awareness of the contribution made by refugee women to
         their countries of resettlement, promote understanding of their
         human rights and of their needs and abilities and encourage mutual
         understanding and acceptance through educational programmes
         promoting cross-cultural and interracial harmony;

     (n) Provide basic and support services to women who are displaced from
         their place of origin as a result of terrorism, violence, drug
         trafficking or other reasons linked to violence situations;

     (o) Develop awareness of the human rights of women and provide, as
         appropriate, human rights education and training to military and
         police personnel operating in areas of armed conflict and areas
         where there are refugees.

148. By Governments:

     (a) Disseminate and implement the UNHCR Guidelines on the Protection of
         Refugee Women and the UNHCR Guidelines on Evaluation and Care of
         Victims of Trauma and Violence, or provide similar guidance, in
         close cooperation with refugee women and in all sectors of refugee
         programmes;

     (b) Protect women and children who migrate as family members from abuse
         or denial of their human rights by sponsors and consider extending
         their stay, should the family relationship dissolve, within the
         limits of national legislation.


         Strategic objective E.6.  Provide assistance to the women of
                                   the colonies and non-self-governing
                                   territories

Actions to be taken

149. By Governments and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Support and promote the implementation of the right of self-
         determination of all peoples as enunciated, inter alia, in the
         Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action by providing special
         programmes in leadership and in training for decision-making;

     (b) Raise public awareness, as appropriate, through the mass media,
         education at all levels and special programmes to create a better
         understanding of the situation of women of the colonies and non-
         self-governing territories.


                           F.  Women and the economy

 There are considerable differences in women's and men's access to and
opportunities to exert power over economic structures in their societies.  In
most parts of the world, women are virtually absent from or are poorly
represented in economic decision-making, including the formulation of
financial, monetary, commercial and other economic policies, as well as tax
systems and rules governing pay.  Since it is often within the framework of
such policies that individual men and women make their decisions, inter alia,
on how to divide their time between remunerated and unremunerated work, the
actual development of these economic structures and policies has a direct
impact on women's and men's access to economic resources, their economic power
and consequently the extent of equality between them at the individual and
family levels as well as in society as a whole.

151. In many regions, women's participation in remunerated work in the formal
and non-formal labour market has increased significantly and has changed
during the past decade.  While women continue to work in agriculture and
fisheries, they have also become increasingly involved in micro, small and
medium-sized enterprises and, in some cases, have become more dominant in the
expanding informal sector.  Due to, inter alia, difficult economic situations
and a lack of bargaining power resulting from gender inequality, many women
have been forced to accept low pay and poor working conditions and thus have
often become preferred workers.  On the other hand, women have entered the
workforce increasingly by choice when they have become aware of and demanded
their rights.  Some have succeeded in entering and advancing in the workplace
and improving their pay and working conditions.  However, women have been
particularly affected by the economic situation and restructuring processes,
which have changed the nature of employment and, in some cases, have led to a
loss of jobs, even for professional and skilled women.  In addition, many
women have entered the informal sector owing to the lack of other
opportunities.  Women's participation and gender concerns are still largely
absent from and should be integrated in the policy formulation process of the
multilateral institutions that define the terms and, in cooperation with
Governments, set the goals of structural adjustment programmes, loans and
grants.

152. Discrimination in education and training, hiring and remuneration,
promotion and horizontal mobility practices, as well as inflexible working
conditions, lack of access to productive resources and inadequate sharing of
family responsibilities, combined with a lack of or insufficient services such
as child care, continue to restrict employment, economic, professional and
other opportunities and mobility for women and make their involvement
stressful.  Moreover, attitudinal obstacles inhibit women's participation in
developing economic policy and in some regions restrict the access of women
and girls to education and training for economic management.

153. Women's share in the labour force continues to rise and almost
everywhere women are working more outside the household, although there has
not been a parallel lightening of responsibility for unremunerated work in the
household and community.  Women's income is becoming increasingly necessary to
households of all types.  In some regions, there has been a growth in women's
entrepreneurship and other self-reliant activities, particularly in the
informal sector.  In many countries, women are the majority of workers in
non-standard work, such as temporary, casual, multiple part-time, contract and
home-based employment.

154. Women migrant workers, including domestic workers, contribute to the
economy of the sending country through their remittances and also to the
economy of the receiving country through their participation in the labour
force.  However, in many receiving countries, migrant women experience higher
levels of unemployment compared with both non-migrant workers and male migrant
workers.

155. Insufficient attention to gender analysis has meant that women's
contributions and concerns remain too often ignored in economic structures,
such as financial markets and institutions, labour markets, economics as an
academic discipline, economic and social infrastructure, taxation and social
security systems, as well as in families and households.  As a result, many
policies and programmes may continue to contribute to inequalities between
women and men.  Where progress has been made in integrating gender
perspectives, programme and policy effectiveness has also been enhanced.

156. Although many women have advanced in economic structures, for the
majority of women, particularly those who face additional barriers, continuing
obstacles have hindered their ability to achieve economic autonomy and to
ensure sustainable livelihoods for themselves and their dependants.  Women are
active in a variety of economic areas, which they often combine, ranging from
wage labour and subsistence farming and fishing to the informal sector. 
However, legal and customary barriers to ownership of or access to land,
natural resources, capital, credit, technology and other means of production,
as well as wage differentials, contribute to impeding the economic progress of
women.  Women contribute to development not only through remunerated work but
also through a great deal of unremunerated work.  On the one hand, women
participate in the production of goods and services for the market and
household consumption, in agriculture, food production or family enterprises. 
Though included in the United Nations System of National Accounts and
therefore in international standards for labour statistics, this unremunerated
work - particularly that related to agriculture - is often undervalued and
under-recorded.  On the other hand, women still also perform the great
majority of unremunerated domestic work and community work, such as caring for
children and older persons, preparing food for the family, protecting the
environment and providing voluntary assistance to vulnerable and disadvantaged
individuals and groups.  This work is often not measured in quantitative terms
and is not valued in national accounts.  Women's contribution to development
is seriously underestimated, and thus its social recognition is limited.  The
full visibility of the type, extent and distribution of this unremunerated
work will also contribute to a better sharing of responsibilities.  

157. Although some new employment opportunities have been created for women
as a result of the globalization of the economy, there are also trends that
have exacerbated inequalities between women and men.  At the same time,
globalization, including economic integration, can create pressures on the
employment situation of women to adjust to new circumstances and to find new
sources of employment as patterns of trade change.  More analysis needs to be
done of the impact of globalization on women's economic status.

158. These trends have been characterized by low wages, little or no labour
standards protection, poor working conditions, particularly with regard to
women's occupational health and safety, low skill levels, and a lack of job
security and social security, in both the formal and informal sectors. 
Women's unemployment is a serious and increasing problem in many countries and
sectors.  Young workers in the informal and rural sectors and migrant female
workers remain the least protected by labour and immigration laws.  Women,
particularly those who are heads of households with young children, are
limited in their employment opportunities for reasons that include inflexible
working conditions and inadequate sharing, by men and by society, of family
responsibilities.

159. In countries that are undergoing fundamental political, economic and
social transformation, the skills of women, if better utilized, could
constitute a major contribution to the economic life of their respective
countries.  Their input should continue to be developed and supported and
their potential further realized.

160. Lack of employment in the private sector and reductions in public
services and public service jobs have affected women disproportionately.  In
some countries, women take on more unpaid work, such as the care of children
and those who are ill or elderly, compensating for lost household income,
particularly when public services are not available.  In many cases,
employment creation strategies have not paid sufficient attention to
occupations and sectors where women predominate; nor have they adequately
promoted the access of women to those occupations and sectors that are
traditionally male.

161. For those women in paid work, many experience obstacles that prevent
them from achieving their potential.  While some are increasingly found in
lower levels of management, attitudinal discrimination often prevents them
from being promoted further.  The experience of sexual harassment is an
affront to a worker's dignity and prevents women from making a contribution
commensurate with their abilities.  The lack of a family-friendly work
environment, including a lack of appropriate and affordable child care, and
inflexible working hours further prevent women from achieving their full
potential.

162. In the private sector, including transnational and national enterprises,
women are largely absent from management and policy levels, denoting
discriminatory hiring and promotion policies and practices.  The unfavourable
work environment as well as the limited number of employment opportunities
available have led many women to seek alternatives.  Women have increasingly
become self-employed and owners and managers of micro, small and medium-scale
enterprises.  The expansion of the informal sector, in many countries, and of
self-organized and independent enterprises is in large part due to women,
whose collaborative, self-help and traditional practices and initiatives in
production and trade represent a vital economic resource.  When they gain
access to and control over capital, credit and other resources, technology and
training, women can increase production, marketing and income for sustainable
development.

163. Taking into account the fact that continuing inequalities and noticeable
progress coexist, rethinking employment policies is necessary in order to
integrate the gender perspective and to draw attention to a wider range of
opportunities as well as to address any negative gender implications of
current patterns of work and employment.  To realize fully equality between
women and men in their contribution to the economy, active efforts are
required for equal recognition and appreciation of the influence that the
work, experience, knowledge and values of both women and men have in society.

164. In addressing the economic potential and independence of women,
Governments and other actors should promote an active and visible policy of
mainstreaming a gender perspective in all policies and programmes so that
before decisions are taken, an analysis is made of the effects on women and
men, respectively.


          Strategic objective F.1.  Promote women's economic rights and
                                    independence, including access to
                                    employment, appropriate working
                                    conditions and control over economic
                                    resources

Actions to be taken

165. By Governments:

     (a) Enact and enforce legislation to guarantee the rights of women and
         men to equal pay for equal work or work of equal value;

     (b) Adopt and implement laws against discrimination based on sex in the
         labour market, especially considering older women workers, hiring
         and promotion, the extension of employment benefits and social
         security, and working conditions;

     (c) Eliminate discriminatory practices by employers and take appropriate
         measures in consideration of women's reproductive role and
         functions, such as the denial of employment and dismissal due to
         pregnancy or breast-feeding, or requiring proof of contraceptive
         use, and take effective measures to ensure that pregnant women,
         women on maternity leave or women re-entering the labour market
         after childbearing are not discriminated against;

     (d) Devise mechanisms and take positive action to enable women to gain
         access to full and equal participation in the formulation of
         policies and definition of structures through such bodies as
         ministries of finance and trade, national economic commissions,
         economic research institutes and other key agencies, as well as
         through their participation in appropriate international bodies;

     (e) Undertake legislation and administrative reforms to give women equal
         rights with men to economic resources, including access to ownership
         and control over land and other forms of property, credit,
         inheritance, natural resources and appropriate new technology;

     (f) Conduct reviews of national income and inheritance tax and social
         security systems to eliminate any existing bias against women;

     (g) Seek to develop a more comprehensive knowledge of work and
         employment through, inter alia, efforts to measure and better
         understand the type, extent and distribution of unremunerated work,
         particularly work in caring for dependants and unremunerated work
         done for family farms or businesses, and encourage the sharing and
         dissemination of information on studies and experience in this
         field, including the development of methods for assessing its value
         in quantitative terms, for possible reflection in accounts that may
         be produced separately from, but consistent with, core national
         accounts;

     (h) Review and amend laws governing the operation of financial
         institutions to ensure that they provide services to women and men
         on an equal basis;

     (i) Facilitate, at appropriate levels, more open and transparent budget
         processes;

     (j) Revise and implement national policies that support the traditional
         savings, credit and lending mechanisms for women;

     (k) Seek to ensure that national policies related to international and
         regional trade agreements do not have an adverse impact on women's
         new and traditional economic activities;

     (l) Ensure that all corporations, including transnational corporations,
         comply with national laws and codes, social security regulations,
         applicable international agreements, instruments and conventions,
         including those related to the environment, and other relevant laws;

     (m) Adjust employment policies to facilitate the restructuring of work
         patterns in order to promote the sharing of family responsibilities;

     (n) Establish mechanisms and other forums to enable women entrepreneurs
         and women workers to contribute to the formulation of policies and
         programmes being developed by economic ministries and financial
         institutions;

     (o) Enact and enforce equal opportunity laws, take positive action and
         ensure compliance by the public and private sectors through various
         means;

     (p) Use gender-impact analyses in the development of macro and micro-
         economic and social policies in order to monitor such impact and
         restructure policies in cases where harmful impact occurs;

     (q) Promote gender-sensitive policies and measures to empower women as
         equal partners with men in technical, managerial and entrepreneurial
         fields;

     (r) Reform laws or enact national policies that support the
         establishment of labour laws to ensure the protection of all women
         workers, including safe work practices, the right to organize and
         access to justice.


           Strategic objective F.2.  Facilitate women's equal access to
                                     resources, employment, markets and
                                     trade

Actions to be taken

166. By Governments:

     (a) Promote and support women's self-employment and the development of
         small enterprises, and strengthen women's access to credit and
         capital on appropriate terms equal to those of men through the
         scaling-up of institutions dedicated to promoting women's
         entrepreneurship, including, as appropriate, non-traditional and
         mutual credit schemes, as well as innovative linkages with financial
         institutions;

     (b) Strengthen the incentive role of the State as employer to develop a
         policy of equal opportunities for women and men;

     (c) Enhance, at the national and local levels, rural women's income-
         generating potential by facilitating their equal access to and
         control over productive resources, land, credit, capital, property
         rights, development programmes and cooperative structures;

     (d) Promote and strengthen micro-enterprises, new small businesses,
         cooperative enterprises, expanded markets and other employment
         opportunities and, where appropriate, facilitate the transition from
         the informal to the formal sector, especially in rural areas;

     (e) Create and modify programmes and policies that recognize and
         strengthen women's vital role in food security and provide paid and
         unpaid women producers, especially those involved in food
         production, such as farming, fishing and aquaculture, as well as
         urban enterprises, with equal access to appropriate technologies,
         transportation, extension services, marketing and credit facilities
         at the local and community levels;

     (f) Establish appropriate mechanisms and encourage intersectoral
         institutions that enable women's cooperatives to optimize access to
         necessary services;

     (g) Increase the proportion of women extension workers and other
         government personnel who provide technical assistance or administer
         economic programmes;

     (h) Review, reformulate, if necessary, and implement policies, including
         business, commercial and contract law and government regulations, to
         ensure that they do not discriminate against micro, small and
         medium-scale enterprises owned by women in rural and urban areas;

     (i) Analyse, advise on, coordinate and implement policies that integrate
         the needs and interests of employed, self-employed and
         entrepreneurial women into sectoral and inter-ministerial policies,
         programmes and budgets;

     (j) Ensure equal access for women to effective job training, retraining,
         counselling and placement services that are not limited to
         traditional employment areas;

     (k) Remove policy and regulatory obstacles faced by women in social and
         development programmes that discourage private and individual
         initiative;

     (l) Safeguard and promote respect for basic workers' rights, including
         the prohibition of forced labour and child labour, freedom of
         association and the right to organize and bargain collectively,
         equal remuneration for men and women for work of equal value and
         non-discrimination in employment, fully implementing the conventions
         of the International Labour Organization in the case of States
         Parties to those conventions and, taking into account the principles
         embodied in the case of those countries that are not parties to
         those conventions in order to achieve truly sustained economic
         growth and sustainable development.

167. By Governments, central banks and national development banks, and
private banking institutions, as appropriate:

     (a) Increase the participation of women, including women entrepreneurs,
         in advisory boards and other forums to enable women entrepreneurs
         from all sectors and their organizations to contribute to the
         formulation and review of policies and programmes being developed by
         economic ministries and banking institutions;

     (b) Mobilize the banking sector to increase lending and refinancing
         through incentives and the development of intermediaries that serve
         the needs of women entrepreneurs and producers in both rural and
         urban areas, and include women in their leadership, planning and
         decision-making;

     (c) Structure services to reach rural and urban women involved in micro,
         small and medium-scale enterprises, with special attention to young
         women, low-income women, those belonging to ethnic and racial
         minorities, and indigenous women who lack access to capital and
         assets; and expand women's access to financial markets by
         identifying and encouraging financial supervisory and regulatory
         reforms that support financial institutions' direct and indirect
         efforts to better meet the credit and other financial needs of the
         micro, small and medium-scale enterprises of women;

     (d) Ensure that women's priorities are included in public investment
         programmes for economic infrastructure, such as water and
         sanitation, electrification and energy conservation, transport and
         road construction; promote greater involvement of women
         beneficiaries at the project planning and implementation stages to
         ensure access to jobs and contracts.

168. By Governments and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Pay special attention to women's needs when disseminating market,
         trade and resource information and provide appropriate training in
         these fields;

     (b) Encourage community economic development strategies that build on
         partnerships among Governments, and encourage members of civil
         society to create jobs and address the social circumstances of
         individuals, families and communities.

169. By multilateral funders and regional development banks, as well as
bilateral and private funding agencies, at the international, regional and
subregional levels:

     (a) Review, where necessary reformulate, and implement policies,
         programmes and projects, to ensure that a higher proportion of
         resources reach women in rural and remote areas;

     (b) Develop flexible funding arrangements to finance intermediary
         institutions that target women's economic activities, and promote
         self-sufficiency and increased capacity in and profitability of
         women's economic enterprises;

     (c) Develop strategies to consolidate and strengthen their assistance to
         the micro, small and medium-scale enterprise sector, in order to
         enhance the opportunities for women to participate fully and equally
         and work together to coordinate and enhance the effectiveness of
         this sector, drawing upon expertise and financial resources from
         within their own organizations as well as from bilateral agencies,
         Governments and non-governmental organizations.

170. By international, multilateral and bilateral development cooperation
organizations:

         Support, through the provision of capital and/or resources,
         financial institutions that serve low-income, small and micro-scale
         women entrepreneurs and producers in both the formal and informal
         sectors.

 By Governments and/or multilateral financial institutions:

         Review rules and procedures of formal national and international
         financial institutions that obstruct replication of the Grameen Bank
         prototype, which provides credit facilities to rural women.

172. By international organizations:

         Provide adequate support for programmes and projects designed to
         promote sustainable and productive entrepreneurial activities among
         women, in particular the disadvantaged.


         Strategic objective F.3.  Provide business services, training and
                                   access to markets, information and
                                   technology, particularly to low-income
                                   women

Actions to be taken

173. By Governments in cooperation with non-governmental organizations and
the private sector:

     (a) Provide public infrastructure to ensure equal market access for
         women and men entrepreneurs;

     (b) Develop programmes that provide training and retraining,
         particularly in new technologies, and affordable services to women
         in business management, product development, financing, production
         and quality control, marketing and the legal aspects of business;

     (c) Provide outreach programmes to inform low-income and poor women,
         particularly in rural and remote areas, of opportunities for market
         and technology access, and provide assistance in taking advantage of
         such opportunities;

     (d) Create non-discriminatory support services, including investment
         funds for women's businesses, and target women, particularly low-
         income women, in trade promotion programmes;

     (e) Disseminate information about successful women entrepreneurs in both
         traditional and non-traditional economic activities and the skills
         necessary to achieve success, and facilitate networking and the
         exchange of information;

     (f) Take measures to ensure equal access of women to ongoing training in
         the workplace, including unemployed women, single parents, women
         re-entering the labour market after an extended temporary exit from
         employment owing to family responsibilities and other causes, and
         women displaced by new forms of production or by retrenchment, and
         increase incentives to enterprises to expand the number of
         vocational and training centres that provide training for women in
         non-traditional areas;

     (g) Provide affordable support services, such as high-quality, flexible
         and affordable child-care services, that take into account the needs
         of working men and women.



174. By local, national, regional and international business organizations
and non-governmental organizations concerned with women's issues:

         Advocate, at all levels, for the promotion and support of women's
         businesses and enterprises, including those in the informal sector,
         and the equal access of women to productive resources.


          Strategic objective F.4.  Strengthen women's economic capacity
                                    and commercial networks

Actions to be taken

175. By Governments:

     (a) Adopt policies that support business organizations, non-governmental
         organizations, cooperatives, revolving loan funds, credit unions,
         grass-roots organizations, women's self-help groups and other groups
         in order to provide services to women entrepreneurs in rural and
         urban areas;

     (b) Integrate a gender perspective into all economic restructuring and
         structural adjustment policies and design programmes for women who
         are affected by economic restructuring, including structural
         adjustment programmes, and for women who work in the informal
         sector;

     (c) Adopt policies that create an enabling environment for women's self-
         help groups, workers' organizations and cooperatives through
         non-conventional forms of support and by recognizing the right to
         freedom of association and the right to organize;

     (d) Support programmes that enhance the self-reliance of special groups
         of women, such as young women, women with disabilities, elderly
         women and women belonging to racial and ethnic minorities;

     (e) Promote gender equality through the promotion of women's studies and
         through the use of the results of studies and gender research in all
         fields, including the economic, scientific and technological fields;

     (f) Support the economic activities of indigenous women, taking into
         account their traditional knowledge, so as to improve their
         situation and development;

     (g) Adopt policies to extend or maintain the protection of labour laws
         and social security provisions for those who do paid work in the
         home;

     (h) Recognize and encourage the contribution of research by women
         scientists and technologists;

     (i) Ensure that policies and regulations do not discriminate against
         micro, small and medium-scale enterprises run by women.

176. By financial intermediaries, national training institutes, credit
unions, non-governmental organizations, women's associations, professional
organizations and the private sector, as appropriate:

     (a) Provide, at the national, regional and international levels,
         training in a variety of business-related and financial management
         and technical skills to enable women, especially young women, to
         participate in economic policy-making at those levels;

     (b) Provide business services, including marketing and trade
         information, product design and innovation, technology transfer and
         quality, to women's business enterprises, including those in export
         sectors of the economy;

     (c) Promote technical and commercial links and establish joint ventures
         among women entrepreneurs at the national, regional and
         international levels to support community-based initiatives;

     (d) Strengthen the participation of women, including marginalized women,
         in production and marketing cooperatives by providing marketing and
         financial support, especially in rural and remote areas;

     (e) Promote and strengthen women's micro-enterprises, new small
         businesses, cooperative enterprises, expanded markets and other
         employment opportunities and, where appropriate, facilitate the
         transition from the informal to the formal sector, in rural and
         urban areas;

     (f) Invest capital and develop investment portfolios to finance women's
         business enterprises;

     (g) Give adequate attention to providing technical assistance, advisory
         services, training and retraining for women connected with the entry
         to the market economy;

     (h) Support credit networks and innovative ventures, including
         traditional savings schemes;

     (i) Provide networking arrangements for entrepreneurial women, including
         opportunities for the mentoring of inexperienced women by the more
         experienced;

     (j) Encourage community organizations and public authorities to
         establish loan pools for women entrepreneurs, drawing on successful
         small-scale cooperative models.

177. By the private sector, including transnational and national
corporations:

     (a) Adopt policies and establish mechanisms to grant contracts on a
         non-discriminatory basis;

     (b) Recruit women for leadership, decision-making and management and
         provide training programmes, all on an equal basis with men;

     (c) Observe national labour, environment, consumer, health and safety
         laws, particularly those that affect women.


         Strategic objective F.5.  Eliminate occupational segregation and
                                   all forms of employment discrimination

Actions to be taken

178. By Governments, employers, employees, trade unions and women's
organizations:

     (a) Implement and enforce laws and regulations and encourage voluntary
         codes of conduct that ensure that international labour standards,
         such as International Labour Organization Convention No. 100 on
         equal pay and workers' rights, apply equally to female and male
         workers;

     (b) Enact and enforce laws and introduce implementing measures,
         including means of redress and access to justice in cases of
         non-compliance, to prohibit direct and indirect discrimination on
         grounds of sex, including by reference to marital or family status,
         in relation to access to employment, conditions of employment,
         including training, promotion, health and safety, as well as
         termination of employment and social security of workers, including
         legal protection against sexual and racial harassment;

     (c) Enact and enforce laws and develop workplace policies against gender
         discrimination in the labour market, especially considering older
         women workers, in hiring and promotion, and in the extension of
         employment benefits and social security, as well as regarding
         discriminatory working conditions and sexual harassment; mechanisms
         should be developed for the regular review and monitoring of such
         laws;

     (d) Eliminate discriminatory practices by employers on the basis of
         women's reproductive roles and functions, including refusal of
         employment and dismissal of women due to pregnancy and breast-
         feeding responsibilities;

     (e) Develop and promote employment programmes and services for women
         entering and/or re-entering the labour market, especially poor
         urban, rural and young women, the self-employed and those negatively
         affected by structural adjustment;

     (f) Implement and monitor positive public- and private-sector
         employment, equity and positive action programmes to address
         systemic discrimination against women in the labour force, in
         particular women with disabilities and women belonging to other
         disadvantaged groups, with respect to hiring, retention and
         promotion, and vocational training of women in all sectors;

     (g) Eliminate occupational segregation, especially by promoting the
         equal participation of women in highly skilled jobs and senior
         management positions, and through other measures, such as
         counselling and placement, that stimulate their on-the-job career
         development and upward mobility in the labour market, and by
         stimulating the diversification of occupational choices by both
         women and men; encourage women to take up non-traditional jobs,
         especially in science and technology, and encourage men to seek
         employment in the social sector;

     (h) Recognize collective bargaining as a right and as an important
         mechanism for eliminating wage inequality for women and to improve
         working conditions;

     (i) Promote the election of women trade union officials and ensure that
         trade union officials elected to represent women are given job
         protection and physical security in connection with the discharge of
         their functions;

     (j) Ensure access to and develop special programmes to enable women with
         disabilities to obtain and retain employment, and ensure access to
         education and training at all proper levels, in accordance with the
         Standard Rules on the Equalization of Opportunities for Persons with
         Disabilities; 30/ adjust working conditions, to the extent possible,
         in order to suit the needs of women with disabilities, who should be
         assured legal protection against unfounded job loss on account of
         their disabilities;

     (k) Increase efforts to close the gap between women's and men's pay,
         take steps to implement the principle of equal remuneration for
         equal work of equal value by strengthening legislation, including
         compliance with international labour laws and standards, and
         encourage job evaluation schemes with gender-neutral criteria;

     (l) Establish and/or strengthen mechanisms to adjudicate matters
         relating to wage discrimination;

     (m) Set specific target dates for eliminating all forms of child labour
         that are contrary to accepted international standards and ensure the
         full enforcement of relevant existing laws and, where appropriate,
         enact the legislation necessary to implement the Convention on the
         Rights of the Child and International Labour Organization standards,
         ensuring the protection of working children, in particular, street
         children, through the provision of appropriate health, education and
         other social services;

     (n) Ensure that strategies to eliminate child labour also address the
         excessive demands made on some girls for unpaid work in their
         household and other households, where applicable;

     (o) Review, analyse and, where appropriate, reformulate the wage
         structures in female-dominated professions, such as teaching,
         nursing and child care, with a view to raising their low status and
         earnings;

     (p) Facilitate the productive employment of documented migrant women
         (including women who have been determined refugees according to the
         1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees) through greater
         recognition of foreign education and credentials and by adopting an
         integrated approach to labour market training that incorporates
         language training.


            Strategic objective F.6.  Promote harmonization of work and
                                      family responsibilities for women
                                      and men

Actions to be taken

179. By Governments:

     (a) Adopt policies to ensure the appropriate protection of labour laws
         and social security benefits for part-time, temporary, seasonal and
         home-based workers; promote career development based on work
         conditions that harmonize work and family responsibilities; 

     (b) Ensure that full and part-time work can be freely chosen by women
         and men on an equal basis, and consider appropriate protection for
         atypical workers in terms of access to employment, working
         conditions and social security;

     (c) Ensure, through legislation, incentives and/or encouragement,
         opportunities for women and men to take job-protected parental leave
         and to have parental benefits; promote the equal sharing of
         responsibilities for the family by men and women, including through
         appropriate legislation, incentives and/or encouragement, and also
         promote the facilitation of breast-feeding for working mothers;

     (d) Develop policies, inter alia, in education to change attitudes that
         reinforce the division of labour based on gender in order to promote
         the concept of shared family responsibility for work in the home,
         particularly in relation to children and elder care;

     (e) Improve the development of, and access to, technologies that
         facilitate occupational as well as domestic work, encourage self-
         support, generate income, transform gender-prescribed roles within
         the productive process and enable women to move out of low-paying
         jobs;

     (f) Examine a range of policies and programmes, including social
         security legislation and taxation systems, in accordance with
         national priorities and policies, to determine how to promote gender
         equality and flexibility in the way people divide their time between
         and derive benefits from education and training, paid employment,
         family responsibilities, volunteer activity and other socially
         useful forms of work, rest and leisure.

180. By Governments, the private sector and non-governmental organizations,
trade unions and the United Nations, as appropriate:

     (a) Adopt appropriate measures involving relevant governmental bodies
         and employers' and employees' associations so that women and men are
         able to take temporary leave from employment, have transferable
         employment and retirement benefits and make arrangements to modify
         work hours without sacrificing their prospects for development and
         advancement at work and in their careers;

     (b) Design and provide educational programmes through innovative media
         campaigns and school and community education programmes to raise
         awareness on gender equality and non-stereotyped gender roles of
         women and men within the family; provide support services and
         facilities, such as on-site child care at workplaces and flexible
         working arrangements;

     (c) Enact and enforce laws against sexual and other forms of harassment
         in all workplaces.


                    G.  Women in power and decision-making

181. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that everyone has the
right to take part in the Government of his/her country.  The empowerment and
autonomy of women and the improvement of women's social, economic and
political status is essential for the achievement of both transparent and
accountable government and administration and sustainable development in all
areas of life.  The power relations that prevent women from leading fulfilling
lives operate at many levels of society, from the most personal to the highly
public.  Achieving the goal of equal participation of women and men in
decision-making will provide a balance that more accurately reflects the
composition of society and is needed in order to strengthen democracy and
promote its proper functioning.  Equality in political decision-making
performs a leverage function without which it is highly unlikely that a real
integration of the equality dimension in government policy-making is feasible.

In this respect, women's equal participation in political life plays a pivotal
role in the general process of the advancement of women.  Women's equal
participation in decision-making is not only a demand for simple justice or
democracy but can also be seen as a necessary condition for women's interests
to be taken into account.  Without the active participation of women and the
incorporation of women's perspective at all levels of decision-making, the
goals of equality, development and peace cannot be achieved.

182. Despite the widespread movement towards democratization in most
countries, women are largely underrepresented at most levels of government,
especially in ministerial and other executive bodies, and have made little
progress in attaining political power in legislative bodies or in achieving
the target endorsed by the Economic and Social Council of having 30 per cent
women in positions at decision-making levels by 1995.  Globally, only
10 per cent of the members of legislative bodies and a lower percentage of
ministerial positions are now held by women.  Indeed, some countries,
including those that are undergoing fundamental political, economic and social
changes, have seen a significant decrease in the number of women represented
in legislative bodies.  Although women make up at least half of the electorate
in almost all countries and have attained the right to vote and hold office in
almost all States Members of the United Nations, women continue to be
seriously underrepresented as candidates for public office.  The traditional
working patterns of many political parties and government structures continue
to be barriers to women's participation in public life.  Women may be
discouraged from seeking political office by discriminatory attitudes and
practices, family and child-care responsibilities, and the high cost of
seeking and holding public office.  Women in politics and decision-making
positions in Governments and legislative bodies contribute to redefining
political priorities, placing new items on the political agenda that reflect
and address women's gender-specific concerns, values and experiences, and
providing new perspectives on mainstream political issues.

183. Women have demonstrated considerable leadership in community and
informal organizations, as well as in public office.  However, socialization
and negative stereotyping of women and men, including stereotyping through the
media, reinforces the tendency for political decision-making to remain the
domain of men.  Likewise, the underrepresentation of women in decision-making
positions in the areas of art, culture, sports, the media, education, religion
and the law have prevented women from having a significant impact on many key
institutions.

184. Owing to their limited access to the traditional avenues to power, such
as the decision-making bodies of political parties, employer organizations and
trade unions, women have gained access to power through alternative
structures, particularly in the non-governmental organization sector.  Through
non-governmental organizations and grass-roots organizations, women have been
able to articulate their interests and concerns and have placed women's issues
on the national, regional and international agendas.

185. Inequality in the public arena can often start with discriminatory
attitudes and practices and unequal power relations between women and men
within the family, as defined in paragraph 29 above.  The unequal division of
labour and responsibilities within households based on unequal power relations
also limits women's potential to find the time and develop the skills required
for participation in decision-making in wider public forums.  A more equal
sharing of those responsibilities between women and men not only provides a
better quality of life for women and their daughters but also enhances their
opportunities to shape and design public policy, practice and expenditure so
that their interests may be recognized and addressed.  Non-formal networks and
patterns of decision-making at the local community level that reflect a
dominant male ethos restrict women's ability to participate equally in
political, economic and social life.

186. The low proportion of women among economic and political decision makers
at the local, national, regional and international levels reflects structural
and attitudinal barriers that need to be addressed through positive measures. 
Governments, transnational and national corporations, the mass media, banks,
academic and scientific institutions, and regional and international
organizations, including those in the United Nations system, do not make full
use of women's talents as top-level managers, policy makers, diplomats and
negotiators.

187. The equitable distribution of power and decision-making at all levels is
dependent on Governments and other actors undertaking statistical gender
analysis and mainstreaming a gender perspective in policy development and the
implementation of programmes.  Equality in decision-making is essential to the
empowerment of women.  In some countries, affirmative action has led to
33.3 per cent or larger representation in local and national Governments.

188. National, regional and international statistical institutions still have
insufficient knowledge of how to present the issues related to the equal
treatment of women and men in the economic and social spheres.  In particular,
there is insufficient use of existing databases and methodologies in the
important sphere of decision-making.

189. In addressing the inequality between men and women in the sharing of
power and decision-making at all levels, Governments and other actors should
promote an active and visible policy of mainstreaming a gender perspective in
all policies and programmes so that before decisions are taken, an analysis is
made of the effects on women and men, respectively.


          Strategic objective G.1.  Take measures to ensure women's equal
                                    access to and full participation in
                                    power structures and decision-making

Actions to be taken

190. By Governments:

     (a) Commit themselves to establishing the goal of gender balance in
         governmental bodies and committees, as well as in public
         administrative entities, and in the judiciary, including,
         inter alia, setting specific targets and implementing measures to
         substantially increase the number of women with a view to achieving
         equal representation of women and men, if necessary through positive
         action, in all governmental and public administration positions;

     (b) Take measures, including, where appropriate, in electoral systems
         that encourage political parties to integrate women in elective and
         non-elective public positions in the same proportion and at the same
         levels as men;

     (c) Protect and promote the equal rights of women and men to engage in
         political activities and to freedom of association, including
         membership in political parties and trade unions;

     (d) Review the differential impact of electoral systems on the political
         representation of women in elected bodies and consider, where
         appropriate, the adjustment or reform of those systems;

     (e) Monitor and evaluate progress in the representation of women through
         the regular collection, analysis and dissemination of quantitative
         and qualitative data on women and men at all levels in various
         decision-making positions in the public and private sectors, and
         disseminate data on the number of women and men employed at various
         levels in Governments on a yearly basis; ensure that women and men
         have equal access to the full range of public appointments and set
         up mechanisms within governmental structures for monitoring progress
         in this field;

     (f) Support non-governmental organizations and research institutes that
         conduct studies on women's participation in and impact on decision-
         making and the decision-making environment;

     (g) Encourage greater involvement of indigenous women in decision-making
         at all levels;

     (h) Encourage and, where appropriate, ensure that government-funded
         organizations adopt non-discriminatory policies and practices in
         order to increase the number and raise the position of women in
         their organizations;

     (i) Recognize that shared work and parental responsibilities between
         women and men promote women's increased participation in public
         life, and take appropriate measures to achieve this, including
         measures to reconcile family and professional life;

     (j) Aim at gender balance in the lists of national candidates nominated
         for election or appointment to United Nations bodies, specialized
         agencies and other autonomous organizations of the United Nations
         system, particularly for posts at the senior level.

191. By political parties:

     (a) Consider examining party structures and procedures to remove all
         barriers that directly or indirectly discriminate against the
         participation of women;

     (b) Consider developing initiatives that allow women to participate
         fully in all internal policy-making structures and appointive and
         electoral nominating processes;

     (c) Consider incorporating gender issues in their political agenda,
         taking measures to ensure that women can participate in the
         leadership of political parties on an equal basis with men.

192. By Governments, national bodies, the private sector, political parties,
trade unions, employers' organizations, research and academic institutions,
subregional and regional bodies and non-governmental and international
organizations:

     (a) Take positive action to build a critical mass of women leaders,
         executives and managers in strategic decision-making positions;

     (b) Create or strengthen, as appropriate, mechanisms to monitor women's
         access to senior levels of decision-making;

     (c) Review the criteria for recruitment and appointment to advisory and
         decision-making bodies and promotion to senior positions to ensure
         that such criteria are relevant and do not discriminate against
         women;

     (d) Encourage efforts by non-governmental organizations, trade unions
         and the private sector to achieve equality between women and men in
         their ranks, including equal participation in their decision-making
         bodies and in negotiations in all areas and at all levels;

     (e) Develop communications strategies to promote public debate on the
         new roles of men and women in society, and in the family as defined
         in paragraph 29 above;

     (f) Restructure recruitment and career-development programmes to ensure
         that all women, especially young women, have equal access to
         managerial, entrepreneurial, technical and leadership training,
         including on-the-job training;

     (g) Develop career advancement programmes for women of all ages that
         include career planning, tracking, mentoring, coaching, training and
         retraining;

     (h) Encourage and support the participation of women's non-governmental
         organizations in United Nations conferences and their preparatory
         processes;

     (i) Aim at and support gender balance in the composition of delegations
         to the United Nations and other international forums.

193. By the United Nations:

     (a) Implement existing and adopt new employment policies and measures in
         order to achieve overall gender equality, particularly at the
         Professional level and above, by the year 2000, with due regard to
         the importance of recruiting staff on as wide a geographical basis
         as possible, in conformity with Article 101, paragraph 3, of the
         Charter of the United Nations;

     (b) Develop mechanisms to nominate women candidates for appointment to
         senior posts in the United Nations, the specialized agencies and
         other organizations and bodies of the United Nations system;

     (c) Continue to collect and disseminate quantitative and qualitative
         data on women and men in decision-making and analyse their
         differential impact on decision-making and monitor progress towards
         achieving the Secretary-General's target of having women hold
         50 per cent of managerial and decision-making positions by the year
         2000.

194. By women's organizations, non-governmental organizations, trade unions,
social partners, producers, and industrial and professional organizations:

     (a) Build and strengthen solidarity among women through information,
         education and sensitization activities;

     (b) Advocate at all levels to enable women to influence political,
         economic and social decisions, processes and systems, and work
         towards seeking accountability from elected representatives on their
         commitment to gender concerns;

     (c) Establish, consistent with data protection legislation, databases on
         women and their qualification for use in appointing women to senior
         decision-making and advisory positions, for dissemination to
         Governments, regional and international organizations and private
         enterprise, political parties and other relevant bodies.


        Strategic objective G.2.  Increase women's capacity to participate
                                  in decision-making and leadership

Actions to be taken

195. By Governments, national bodies, the private sector, political parties,
trade unions, employers' organizations, subregional and regional bodies,
non-governmental and international organizations and educational institutions:

     (a) Provide leadership and self-esteem training to assist women and
         girls, particularly those with special needs, women with
         disabilities and women belonging to racial and ethnic minorities to
         strengthen their self-esteem and to encourage them to take decision-
         making positions;

     (b) Have transparent criteria for decision-making positions and ensure
         that the selecting bodies have a gender-balanced composition;

     (c) Create a system of mentoring for inexperienced women and, in
         particular, offer training, including training in leadership and
         decision-making, public speaking and self-assertion, as well as in
         political campaigning;

     (d) Provide gender-sensitive training for women and men to promote
         non-discriminatory working relationships and respect for diversity
         in work and management styles;

     (e) Develop mechanisms and training to encourage women to participate in
         the electoral process, political activities and other leadership
         areas.


           H.  Institutional mechanisms for the advancement of women

196. National machineries for the advancement of women have been established
in almost every Member State to, inter alia, design, promote the
implementation of, execute, monitor, evaluate, advocate and mobilize support
for policies that promote the advancement of women.  National machineries are
diverse in form and uneven in their effectiveness, and in some cases have
declined.  Often marginalized in national government structures, these
mechanisms are frequently hampered by unclear mandates, lack of adequate
staff, training, data and sufficient resources, and insufficient support from
national political leadership.

197. At the regional and international levels, mechanisms and institutions to
promote the advancement of women as an integral part of mainstream political,
economic, social and cultural development, and of initiatives on development
and human rights, encounter similar problems emanating from a lack of
commitment at the highest levels.

198. Successive international conferences have underscored the need to take
gender factors into account in policy and programme planning.  However, in
many instances this has not been done.

199. Regional bodies concerned with the advancement of women have been
strengthened, together with international machinery, such as the Commission on
the Status of Women and the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination
against Women.  However, the limited resources available continue to impede
full implementation of their mandates.

200. Methodologies for conducting gender-based analysis in policies and
programmes and for dealing with the differential effects of policies on women
and men have been developed in many organizations and are available for
application but are often not being applied or are not being applied
consistently.

201. A national machinery for the advancement of women is the central policy-
coordinating unit inside government.  Its main task is to support government-
wide mainstreaming of a gender-equality perspective in all policy areas.  The
necessary conditions for an effective functioning of such national machineries
include:

     (a) Location at the highest possible level in the Government, falling
         under the responsibility of a Cabinet minister;

     (b) Institutional mechanisms or processes that facilitate, as
         appropriate, decentralized planning, implementation and monitoring
         with a view to involving non-governmental organizations and
         community organizations from the grass-roots upwards;

     (c) Sufficient resources in terms of budget and professional capacity;

     (d) Opportunity to influence development of all government policies.

202. In addressing the issue of mechanisms for promoting the advancement of
women, Governments and other actors should promote an active and visible
policy of mainstreaming a gender perspective in all policies and programmes so
that, before decisions are taken, an analysis is made of the effects on women
and men, respectively.


        Strategic objective H.1.  Create or strengthen national machineries
                                  and other governmental bodies

Actions to be taken

203. By Governments:

     (a) Ensure that responsibility for the advancement of women is vested in
         the highest possible level of government; in many cases, this could
         be at the level of a Cabinet minister;

     (b) Based on a strong political commitment, create a national machinery,
         where it does not exist, and strengthen, as appropriate, existing
         national machineries, for the advancement of women at the highest
         possible level of government; it should have clearly defined
         mandates and authority; critical elements would be adequate
         resources and the ability and competence to influence policy and
         formulate and review legislation; among other things, it should
         perform policy analysis, undertake advocacy, communication,
         coordination and monitoring of implementation;

     (c) Provide staff training in designing and analysing data from a gender
         perspective;

     (d) Establish procedures to allow the machinery to gather information on
         government-wide policy issues at an early stage and continuously use
         it in the policy development and review process within the
         Government;

     (e) Report, on a regular basis, to legislative bodies on the progress of
         efforts, as appropriate, to mainstream gender concerns, taking into
         account the implementation of the Platform for Action;

     (f) Encourage and promote the active involvement of the broad and
         diverse range of institutional actors in the public, private and
         voluntary sectors to work for equality between women and men.


            Strategic objective H.2.  Integrate gender perspectives in
                                      legislation, public policies,
                                      programmes and projects

Actions to be taken

204. By Governments:

     (a) Seek to ensure that before policy decisions are taken, an analysis
         of their impact on women and men, respectively, is carried out;

     (b) Regularly review national policies, programmes and projects, as well
         as their implementation, evaluating the impact of employment and
         income policies in order to guarantee that women are direct
         beneficiaries of development and that their full contribution to
         development, both remunerated and unremunerated, is considered in
         economic policy and planning;

     (c) Promote national strategies and aims on equality between women and
         men in order to eliminate obstacles to the exercise of women's
         rights and eradicate all forms of discrimination against women;

     (d) Work with members of legislative bodies, as appropriate, to promote
         a gender perspective in all legislation and policies;

     (e) Give all ministries the mandate to review policies and programmes
         from a gender perspective and in the light of the Platform for
         Action; locate the responsibility for the implementation of that
         mandate at the highest possible level; establish and/or strengthen
         an inter-ministerial coordination structure to carry out this
         mandate, to monitor progress and to network with relevant
         machineries.

205. By national machinery:

     (a) Facilitate the formulation and implementation of government policies
         on equality between women and men, develop appropriate strategies
         and methodologies, and promote coordination and cooperation within
         the central Government in order to ensure mainstreaming of a gender
         perspective in all policy-making processes;

     (b) Promote and establish cooperative relationships with relevant
         branches of government, centres for women's studies and research,
         academic and educational institutions, the private sector, the
         media, non-governmental organizations, especially women's
         organizations, and all other actors of civil society;

     (c) Undertake activities focusing on legal reform with regard,
         inter alia, to the family, conditions of employment, social
         security, income tax, equal opportunity in education, positive
         measures to promote the advancement of women, and the perception of
         attitudes and a culture favourable to equality, as well as promote a
         gender perspective in legal policy and programming reforms;

     (d) Promote the increased participation of women as both active agents
         and beneficiaries of the development process, which would result in
         an improvement in the quality of life for all;

     (e) Establish direct links with national, regional and international
         bodies dealing with the advancement of women;

     (f) Provide training and advisory assistance to government agencies in
         order to integrate a gender perspective in their policies and
         programmes.


            Strategic objective H.3.  Generate and disseminate gender-
                                      disaggregated data and information
                                      for planning and evaluation

Actions to be taken

206. By national, regional and international statistical services and
relevant governmental and United Nations agencies, in cooperation with
research and documentation organizations, in their respective areas of
responsibility:

     (a) Ensure that statistics related to individuals are collected,
         compiled, analysed and presented by sex and age and reflect
         problems, issues and questions related to women and men in society;

     (b) Collect, compile, analyse and present on a regular basis data
         disaggregated by age, sex, socio-economic and other relevant
         indicators, including number of dependants, for utilization in
         policy and programme planning and implementation;

     (c) Involve centres for women's studies and research organizations in
         developing and testing appropriate indicators and research
         methodologies to strengthen gender analysis, as well as in
         monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the goals of the
         Platform for Action;

     (d) Designate or appoint staff to strengthen gender-statistics
         programmes and ensure coordination, monitoring and linkage to all
         fields of statistical work, and prepare output that integrates
         statistics from the various subject areas;

     (e) Improve data collection on the full contribution of women and men to
         the economy, including their participation in the informal
         sector(s);

     (f) Develop a more comprehensive knowledge of all forms of work and
         employment by:

         (i)   Improving data collection on the unremunerated work which is
               already included in the United Nations System of National
               Accounts, such as in agriculture, particularly subsistence
               agriculture, and other types of non-market production
               activities;

         (ii)  Improving measurements that at present underestimate women's
               unemployment and underemployment in the labour market;

        (iii)  Developing methods, in the appropriate forums, for assessing
               the value, in quantitative terms, of unremunerated work that is
               outside national accounts, such as caring for dependants and
               preparing food, for possible reflection in satellite or other
               official accounts that may be produced separately from but are
               consistent with core national accounts, with a view to
               recognizing the economic contribution of women and making
               visible the unequal distribution of remunerated and
               unremunerated work between women and men;

     (g) Develop an international classification of activities for time-use
         statistics that is sensitive to the differences between women and
         men in remunerated and unremunerated work, and collect data
         disaggregated by sex.  At the national level, subject to national
         constraints:

         (i)   Conduct regular time-use studies to measure, in quantitative
               terms, unremunerated work, including recording those activities
               that are performed simultaneously with remunerated or other
               unremunerated activities;

         (ii)  Measure, in quantitative terms, unremunerated work that is
               outside national accounts and work to improve methods to assess
               and accurately reflect its value in satellite or other official
               accounts that are separate from but consistent with core
               national accounts;

     (h) Improve concepts and methods of data collection on the measurement
         of poverty among women and men, including their access to resources;

     (i) Strengthen vital statistical systems and incorporate gender analysis
         into publications and research; give priority to gender differences
         in research design and in data collection and analysis in order to
         improve data on morbidity; and improve data collection on access to
         health services, including access to comprehensive sexual and
         reproductive health services, maternal care and family planning,
         with special priority for adolescent mothers and for elder care;

     (j) Develop improved gender-disaggregated and age-specific data on the
         victims and perpetrators of all forms of violence against women,
         such as domestic violence, sexual harassment, rape, incest and
         sexual abuse, and trafficking in women and girls, as well as on
         violence by agents of the State;

     (k) Improve concepts and methods of data collection on the participation
         of women and men with disabilities, including their access to
         resources.

207. By Governments:

     (a) Ensure the regular production of a statistical publication on gender
         that presents and interprets topical data on women and men in a form
         suitable for a wide range of non-technical users; 

     (b) Ensure that producers and users of statistics in each country
         regularly review the adequacy of the official statistical system and
         its coverage of gender issues, and prepare a plan for needed
         improvements, where necessary;

     (c) Develop and encourage the development of quantitative and
         qualitative studies by research organizations, trade unions,
         employers, the private sector and non-governmental organizations on
         the sharing of power and influence in society, including the number
         of women and men in senior decision-making positions in both the
         public and private sectors;

     (d) Use more gender-sensitive data in the formulation of policy and
         implementation of programmes and projects.

208. By the United Nations:

     (a) Promote the development of methods to find better ways to collect,
         collate and analyse data that may relate to the human rights of
         women, including violence against women, for use by all relevant
         United Nations bodies;

     (b) Promote the further development of statistical methods to improve
         data that relate to women in economic, social, cultural and
         political development;

     (c) Prepare a new issue of The World's Women at regular five-year
         intervals and distribute it widely;

     (d) Assist countries, upon request, in the development of gender
         policies and programmes;

     (e) Ensure that the relevant reports, data and publications of the
         Statistical Division of the United Nations Secretariat and the
         International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of
         Women on progress at the national and international levels are
         transmitted to the Commission on the Status of Women in a regular
         and coordinated fashion.

209. By multilateral development institutions and bilateral donors:

         Encourage and support the development of national capacity in
         developing countries and in countries with economies in transition
         by providing resources and technical assistance so that countries
         can fully measure the work done by women and men, including both
         remunerated and unremunerated work, and, where appropriate, use
         satellite or other official accounts for unremunerated work.


                           I.  Human rights of women

210. Human rights and fundamental freedoms are the birthright of all human
beings; their protection and promotion is the first responsibility of
Governments.

211. The World Conference on Human Rights reaffirmed the solemn commitment of
all States to fulfil their obligation to promote universal respect for, and
observance and protection of, all human rights and fundamental freedoms for
all, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, other instruments
relating to human rights, and international law.  The universal nature of
these rights and freedoms is beyond question.

212. The promotion and protection of all human rights and fundamental
freedoms must be considered as a priority objective of the United Nations, in
accordance with its purposes and principles, in particular with the purpose of
international cooperation.  In the framework of these purposes and principles,
the promotion and protection of all human rights is a legitimate concern of
the international community.  The international community must treat human
rights globally, in a fair and equal manner, on the same footing, and with the
same emphasis.  The Platform for Action reaffirms the importance of ensuring
the universality, objectivity and non-selectivity of the consideration of
human rights issues.

213. The Platform for Action reaffirms that all human rights - civil,
cultural, economic, political and social, including the right to development -
are universal, indivisible, interdependent and interrelated, as expressed in
the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference
on Human Rights.  The Conference reaffirmed that the human rights of women and
the girl child are an inalienable, integral and indivisible part of universal
human rights.  The full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and
fundamental freedoms by women and girls is a priority for Governments and the
United Nations and is essential for the advancement of women.

214. Equal rights of men and women are explicitly mentioned in the Preamble
to the Charter of the United Nations.  All the major international human
rights instruments include sex as one of the grounds upon which States may not
discriminate.

215. Governments must not only refrain from violating the human rights of all
women, but must work actively to promote and protect these rights. 
Recognition of the importance of the human rights of women is reflected in the
fact that three quarters of the States Members of the United Nations have
become parties to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
Discrimination against Women.

216. The World Conference on Human Rights reaffirmed clearly that the human
rights of women throughout the life cycle are an inalienable, integral and
indivisible part of universal human rights.  The International Conference on
Population and Development reaffirmed women's reproductive rights and the
right to development.  Both the Declaration of the Rights of the Child 31/ and
the Convention on the Rights of the Child 11/ guarantee children's rights and
uphold the principle of non-discrimination on the grounds of gender.

217. The gap between the existence of rights and their effective enjoyment
derives from a lack of commitment by Governments to promoting and protecting
those rights and the failure of Governments to inform women and men alike
about them.  The lack of appropriate recourse mechanisms at the national and
international levels, and inadequate resources at both levels, compound the
problem.  In most countries, steps have been taken to reflect the rights
guaranteed by the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination
against Women in national law.  A number of countries have established
mechanisms to strengthen women's ability to exercise their rights.

218. In order to protect the human rights of women, it is necessary to avoid,
as far as possible, resorting to reservations and to ensure that no
reservation is incompatible with the object and purpose of the Convention or
is otherwise incompatible with international treaty law.  Unless the human
rights of women, as defined by international human rights instruments, are
fully recognized and effectively protected, applied, implemented and enforced
in national law as well as in national practice in family, civil, penal,
labour and commercial codes and administrative rules and regulations, they
will exist in name only.

219. In those countries that have not yet become parties to the Convention on
the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and other
international human rights instruments, or where reservations that are
incompatible with the object or purpose of the Convention have been entered,
or where national laws have not yet been revised to implement international
norms and standards, women's de jure equality is not yet secured.  Women's
full enjoyment of equal rights is undermined by the discrepancies between some
national legislation and international law and international instruments on
human rights.  Overly complex administrative procedures, lack of awareness
within the judicial process and inadequate monitoring of the violation of the
human rights of all women, coupled with the underrepresentation of women in
justice systems, insufficient information on existing rights and persistent
attitudes and practices perpetuate women's de facto inequality.  De facto
inequality is also perpetuated by the lack of enforcement of, inter alia,
family, civil, penal, labour and commercial laws or codes, or administrative
rules and regulations intended to ensure women's full enjoyment of human
rights and fundamental freedoms.

220. Every person should be entitled to participate in, contribute to and
enjoy cultural, economic, political and social development.  In many cases
women and girls suffer discrimination in the allocation of economic and social
resources.  This directly violates their economic, social and cultural rights.

221. The human rights of all women and the girl child must form an integral
part of United Nations human rights activities.  Intensified efforts are
needed to integrate the equal status and the human rights of all women and
girls into the mainstream of United Nations system-wide activities and to
address these issues regularly and systematically throughout relevant bodies
and mechanisms.  This requires, inter alia, improved cooperation and
coordination between the Commission on the Status of Women, the United Nations
High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Commission on Human Rights, including
its special and thematic rapporteurs, independent experts, working groups and
its Subcommission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of
Minorities, the Commission on Sustainable Development, the Commission for
Social Development, the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice,
and the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women and other
human rights treaty bodies, and all relevant entities of the United Nations
system, including the specialized agencies.  Cooperation is also needed to
strengthen, rationalize and streamline the United Nations human rights system
and to promote its effectiveness and efficiency, taking into account the need
to avoid unnecessary duplication and overlapping of mandates and tasks.

222. If the goal of full realization of human rights for all is to be
achieved, international human rights instruments must be applied in such a way
as to take more clearly into consideration the systematic and systemic nature
of discrimination against women that gender analysis has clearly indicated.

223. Bearing in mind the Programme of Action of the International Conference
on Population and Development 14/ and the Vienna Declaration and Programme of
Action 2/ adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights, the Fourth World
Conference on Women reaffirms that reproductive rights rest on the recognition
of the basic right of all couples and individuals to decide freely and
responsibly the number, spacing and timing of their children and to have the
information and means to do so, and the right to attain the highest standard
of sexual and reproductive health.  It also includes their right to make
decisions concerning reproduction free of discrimination, coercion and
violence, as expressed in human rights documents.

224. Violence against women both violates and impairs or nullifies the
enjoyment by women of human rights and fundamental freedoms.  Taking into
account the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women and the
work of Special Rapporteurs, gender-based violence, such as battering and
other domestic violence, sexual abuse, sexual slavery and exploitation, and
international trafficking in women and children, forced prostitution and
sexual harassment, as well as violence against women, resulting from cultural
prejudice, racism and racial discrimination, xenophobia, pornography, ethnic
cleansing, armed conflict, foreign occupation, religious and anti-religious
extremism and terrorism are incompatible with the dignity and the worth of the
human person and must be combated and eliminated.  Any harmful aspect of
certain traditional, customary or modern practices that violates the rights of
women should be prohibited and eliminated.  Governments should take urgent
action to combat and eliminate all forms of violence against women in private
and public life, whether perpetrated or tolerated by the State or private
persons.

225. Many women face additional barriers to the enjoyment of their human
rights because of such factors as their race, language, ethnicity, culture,
religion, disability or socio-economic class or because they are indigenous
people, migrants, including women migrant workers, displaced women or
refugees.  They may also be disadvantaged and marginalized by a general lack
of knowledge and recognition of their human rights as well as by the obstacles
they meet in gaining access to information and recourse mechanisms in cases of
violation of their rights.

226. The factors that cause the flight of refugee women, other displaced women
in need of international protection and internally displaced women may be
different from those affecting men.  These women continue to be vulnerable to
abuses of their human rights during and after their flight.

227. While women are increasingly using the legal system to exercise their
rights, in many countries lack of awareness of the existence of these rights
is an obstacle that prevents women from fully enjoying their human rights and
attaining equality.  Experience in many countries has shown that women can be
empowered and motivated to assert their rights, regardless of their level of
education or socio-economic status.  Legal literacy programmes and media
strategies have been effective in helping women to understand the link between
their rights and other aspects of their lives and in demonstrating that
cost-effective initiatives can be undertaken to help women obtain those
rights.  Provision of human rights education is essential for promoting an
understanding of the human rights of women, including knowledge of recourse
mechanisms to redress violations of their rights.  It is necessary for all
individuals, especially women in vulnerable circumstances, to have full
knowledge of their rights and access to legal recourse against violations of
their rights.

228. Women engaged in the defence of human rights must be protected. 
Governments have a duty to guarantee the full enjoyment of all rights set out
in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on
Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social
and Cultural Rights by women working peacefully in a personal or
organizational capacity for the promotion and protection of human rights. 
Non-governmental organizations, women's organizations and feminist groups have
played a catalytic role in the promotion of the human rights of women through
grass-roots activities, networking and advocacy and need encouragement,
support and access to information from Governments in order to carry out these
activities.

229. In addressing the enjoyment of human rights, Governments and other
actors should promote an active and visible policy of mainstreaming a gender
perspective in all policies and programmes so that, before decisions are
taken, an analysis is made of the effects on women and men, respectively.


     Strategic objective I.1.  Promote and protect the human rights of women,
                               through the full implementation of all human
                               rights instruments, especially the Convention
                               on the Elimination of All Forms of
                               Discrimination against Women

Actions to be taken

230. By Governments:

     (a) Work actively towards ratification of or accession to and implement
         international and regional human rights treaties;

     (b) Ratify and accede to and ensure implementation of the Convention on
         the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women so that
         universal ratification of the Convention can be achieved by the
         year 2000;

     (c) Limit the extent of any reservations to the Convention on the
         Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women; formulate
         any such reservations as precisely and as narrowly as possible;
         ensure that no reservations are incompatible with the object and
         purpose of the Convention or otherwise incompatible with
         international treaty law and regularly review them with a view to
         withdrawing them; and withdraw reservations that are contrary to the
         object and purpose of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms
         of Discrimination against Women or which are otherwise incompatible
         with international treaty law;

     (d) Consider drawing up national action plans identifying steps to
         improve the promotion and protection of human rights, including the
         human rights of women, as recommended by the World Conference on
         Human Rights;

     (e) Create or strengthen independent national institutions for the
         protection and promotion of these rights, including the human rights
         of women, as recommended by the World Conference on Human Rights;

     (f) Develop a comprehensive human rights education programme to raise
         awareness among women of their human rights and raise awareness
         among others of the human rights of women;

     (g) If they are States parties, implement the Convention by reviewing
         all national laws, policies, practices and procedures to ensure that
         they meet the obligations set out in the Convention; all States
         should undertake a review of all national laws, policies, practices
         and procedures to ensure that they meet international human rights
         obligations in this matter;

     (h) Include gender aspects in reporting under all other human rights
         conventions and instruments, including ILO conventions, to ensure
         analysis and review of the human rights of women;

     (i) Report on schedule to the Committee on the Elimination of
         Discrimination against Women regarding the implementation of the
         Convention, following fully the guidelines established by the
         Committee and involving non-governmental organizations, where
         appropriate, or taking into account their contributions in the
         preparation of the report;

     (j) Enable the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against
         Women fully to discharge its mandate by allowing for adequate
         meeting time through broad ratification of the revision adopted by
         the States parties to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms
         of Discrimination against Women on 22 May 1995 relative to
         article 20, paragraph 1, 32/ and by promoting efficient working
         methods;

     (k) Support the process initiated by the Commission on the Status of
         Women with a view to elaborating a draft optional protocol to the
         Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against
         Women that could enter into force as soon as possible on a right of
         petition procedure, taking into consideration the Secretary-
         General's report on the optional protocol, including those views
         related to its feasibility;

     (l) Take urgent measures to achieve universal ratification of or
         accession to the Convention on the Rights of the Child before the
         end of 1995 and full implementation of the Convention in order to
         ensure equal rights for girls and boys; those that have not already
         done so are urged to become parties in order to realize universal
         implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child by the
         year 2000;

     (m) Address the acute problems of children, inter alia, by supporting
         efforts in the context of the United Nations system aimed at
         adopting efficient international measures for the prevention and
         eradication of female infanticide, harmful child labour, the sale of
         children and their organs, child prostitution, child pornography and
         other forms of sexual abuse and consider contributing to the
         drafting of an optional protocol to the Convention on the Rights of
         the Child;

     (n) Strengthen the implementation of all relevant human rights
         instruments in order to combat and eliminate, including through
         international cooperation, organized and other forms of trafficking
         in women and children, including trafficking for the purposes of
         sexual exploitation, pornography, prostitution and sex tourism, and
         provide legal and social services to the victims; this should
         include provisions for international cooperation to prosecute and
         punish those responsible for organized exploitation of women and
         children;

     (o) Taking into account the need to ensure full respect for the human
         rights of indigenous women, consider a declaration on the rights of
         indigenous people for adoption by the General Assembly within the
         International Decade of the World's Indigenous People and encourage
         the participation of indigenous women in the working group
         elaborating the draft declaration, in accordance with the provisions
         for the participation of organizations of indigenous people.

231. By relevant organs, bodies and agencies of the United Nations system,
all human rights bodies of the United Nations system, as well as the United
Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees, while promoting greater efficiency and
effectiveness through better coordination of the various bodies, mechanisms
and procedures, taking into account the need to avoid unnecessary duplication
and overlapping of their mandates and tasks:

     (a) Give full, equal and sustained attention to the human rights of
         women in the exercise of their respective mandates to promote
         universal respect for and protection of all human rights - civil,
         cultural, economic, political and social rights, including the right
         to development;

     (b) Ensure the implementation of the recommendations of the World
         Conference on Human Rights for the full integration and
         mainstreaming of the human rights of women;

     (c) Develop a comprehensive policy programme for mainstreaming the human
         rights of women throughout the United Nations system, including
         activities with regard to advisory services, technical assistance,
         reporting methodology, gender-impact assessments, coordination,
         public information and human rights education, and play an active
         role in the implementation of the programme;

     (d) Ensure the integration and full participation of women as both
         agents and beneficiaries in the development process and reiterate
         the objectives established for global action for women towards
         sustainable and equitable development set forth in the Rio
         Declaration on Environment and Development; 18/

     (e) Include information on gender-based human rights violations in their
         activities and integrate the findings into all of their programmes
         and activities;

     (f) Ensure that there is collaboration and coordination of the work of
         all human rights bodies and mechanisms to ensure that the human
         rights of women are respected;

     (g) Strengthen cooperation and coordination between the Commission on
         the Status of Women, the Commission on Human Rights, the Commission
         for Social Development, the Commission on Sustainable Development,
         the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, the United
         Nations human rights treaty monitoring bodies, including the
         Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, and
         the United Nations Development Fund for Women, the International
         Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women, the
         United Nations Development Programme, the United Nations Children's
         Fund and other organizations of the United Nations system, acting
         within their mandates, in the promotion of the human rights of
         women, and improve cooperation between the Division for the
         Advancement of Women and the Centre for Human Rights;

     (h) Establish effective cooperation between the United Nations High
         Commissioner for Human Rights and the United Nations High
         Commissioner for Refugees and other relevant bodies, within their
         respective mandates, taking into account the close link between
         massive violations of human rights, especially in the form of
         genocide, ethnic cleansing, systematic rape of women in war
         situations and refugee flows and other displacements, and the fact
         that refugee, displaced and returnee women may be subject to
         particular human rights abuse;

     (i) Encourage incorporation of a gender perspective in national
         programmes of action and in human rights and national institutions,
         within the context of human rights advisory services programmes;

     (j) Provide training in the human rights of women for all United Nations
         personnel and officials, especially those in human rights and
         humanitarian relief activities, and promote their understanding of
         the human rights of women so that they recognize and deal with
         violations of the human rights of women and can fully take into
         account the gender aspect of their work;

     (k) In reviewing the implementation of the plan of action for the United
         Nations Decade for Human Rights Education (1995-2004), take into
         account the results of the Fourth World Conference on Women.


         Strategic objective I.2.  Ensure equality and non-discrimination
                                   under the law and in practice

Actions to be taken

232. By Governments:

     (a) Give priority to promoting and protecting the full and equal
         enjoyment by women and men of all human rights and fundamental
         freedoms without distinction of any kind as to race, colour, sex,
         language, religion, political or other opinions, national or social
         origins, property, birth or other status;

     (b) Provide constitutional guarantees and/or enact appropriate
         legislation to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex for all
         women and girls of all ages and assure women of all ages equal
         rights and their full enjoyment;

     (c) Embody the principle of the equality of men and women in their
         legislation and ensure, through law and other appropriate means, the
         practical realization of this principle;

     (d) Review national laws, including customary laws and legal practices
         in the areas of family, civil, penal, labour and commercial law in
         order to ensure the implementation of the principles and procedures
         of all relevant international human rights instruments by means of
         national legislation, revoke any remaining laws that discriminate on
         the basis of sex and remove gender bias in the administration of
         justice;

     (e) Strengthen and encourage the development of programmes to protect
         the human rights of women in the national institutions on human
         rights that carry out programmes, such as human rights commissions
         or ombudspersons, according them appropriate status, resources and
         access to the Government to assist individuals, in particular women,
         and ensure that these institutions pay adequate attention to
         problems involving the violation of the human rights of women;

     (f) Take action to ensure that the human rights of women, including the
         rights referred to in paragraphs 94 to 96 above, are fully respected
         and protected;

     (g) Take urgent action to combat and eliminate violence against women,
         which is a human rights violation, resulting from harmful
         traditional or customary practices, cultural prejudices and
         extremism;

     (h) Prohibit female genital mutilation wherever it exists and give
         vigorous support to efforts among non-governmental and community
         organizations and religious institutions to eliminate such
         practices;

     (i) Provide gender-sensitive human rights education and training to
         public officials, including, inter alia, police and military
         personnel, corrections officers, health and medical personnel, and
         social workers, including people who deal with migration and refugee
         issues, and teachers at all levels of the educational system, and
         make available such education and training also to the judiciary and
         members of parliament in order to enable them to better exercise
         their public responsibilities;

     (j) Promote the equal right of women to be members of trade unions and
         other professional and social organizations;

     (k) Establish effective mechanisms for investigating violations of the
         human rights of women perpetrated by any public official and take
         the necessary punitive legal measures in accordance with national
         laws;

     (l) Review and amend criminal laws and procedures, as necessary, to
         eliminate any discrimination against women in order to ensure that
         criminal law and procedures guarantee women effective protection
         against, and prosecution of, crimes directed at or
         disproportionately affecting women, regardless of the relationship
         between the perpetrator and the victim, and ensure that women
         defendants, victims and/or witnesses are not revictimized or
         discriminated against in the investigation and prosecution of
         crimes;

     (m) Ensure that women have the same right as men to be judges, advocates
         or other officers of the court, as well as police officers and
         prison and detention officers, among other things;

     (n) Strengthen existing or establish readily available and free or
         affordable alternative administrative mechanisms and legal aid
         programmes to assist disadvantaged women seeking redress for
         violations of their rights;

     (o) Ensure that all women and non-governmental organizations and their
         members in the field of protection and promotion of all human
         rights - civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights,
         including the right to development - enjoy fully all human rights
         and freedoms in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human
         Rights and all other human rights instruments and the protection of
         national laws;

     (p) Strengthen and encourage the implementation of the recommendations
         contained in the Standard Rules on the Equalization of Opportunities
         for Persons with Disabilities, 30/ paying special attention to
         ensure non-discrimination and equal enjoyment of all human rights
         and fundamental freedoms by women and girls with disabilities,
         including their access to information and services in the field of
         violence against women, as well as their active participation in and
         economic contribution to all aspects of society;

     (q) Encourage the development of gender-sensitive human rights
         programmes.


               Strategic objective I.3.  Achieve legal literacy

Actions to be taken

233. By Governments and non-governmental organizations, the United Nations
and other international organizations, as appropriate:

     (a) Translate, whenever possible, into local and indigenous languages
         and into alternative formats appropriate for persons with
         disabilities and persons at lower levels of literacy, publicize and
         disseminate laws and information relating to the equal status and
         human rights of all women, including the Universal Declaration of
         Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political
         Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural
         Rights, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
         Discrimination against Women, the International Convention on the
         Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, 33/ the
         Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention against
         Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or
         Punishment, the Declaration on the Right to Development 34/ and the
         Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women, as well as
         the outcomes of relevant United Nations conferences and summits and
         national reports to the Committee on the Elimination of
         Discrimination against Women;

     (b) Publicize and disseminate such information in easily understandable
         formats and alternative formats appropriate for persons with
         disabilities, and persons at low levels of literacy;

     (c) Disseminate information on national legislation and its impact on
         women, including easily accessible guidelines on how to use a
         justice system to exercise one's rights;

     (d) Include information about international and regional instruments and
         standards in their public information and human rights education
         activities and in adult education and training programmes,
         particularly for groups such as the military, the police and other
         law enforcement personnel, the judiciary, and legal and health
         professionals to ensure that human rights are effectively protected;

     (e) Make widely available and fully publicize information on the
         existence of national, regional and international mechanisms for
         seeking redress when the human rights of women are violated;

     (f) Encourage, coordinate and cooperate with local and regional women's
         groups, relevant non-governmental organizations, educators and the
         media, to implement programmes in human rights education to make
         women aware of their human rights;

     (g) Promote education on the human and legal rights of women in school
         curricula at all levels of education and undertake public campaigns,
         including in the most widely used languages of the country, on the
         equality of women and men in public and private life, including
         their rights within the family and relevant human rights instruments
         under national and international law;

     (h) Promote education in all countries in human rights and international
         humanitarian law for members of the national security and armed
         forces, including those assigned to United Nations peace-keeping
         operations, on a routine and continuing basis, reminding them and
         sensitizing them to the fact that they should respect the rights of
         women at all times, both on and off duty, giving special attention
         to the rules on the protection of women and children and to the
         protection of human rights in situations of armed conflict;

     (i) Take appropriate measures to ensure that refugee and displaced
         women, migrant women and women migrant workers are made aware of
         their human rights and of the recourse mechanisms available to them.


                            J.  Women and the media

234. During the past decade, advances in information technology have
facilitated a global communications network that transcends national
boundaries and has an impact on public policy, private attitudes and
behaviour, especially of children and young adults.  Everywhere the potential
exists for the media to make a far greater contribution to the advancement of
women.

235. More women are involved in careers in the communications sector, but few
have attained positions at the decision-making level or serve on governing
boards and bodies that influence media policy.  The lack of gender sensitivity
in the media is evidenced by the failure to eliminate the gender-based
stereotyping that can be found in public and private local, national and
international media organizations.

236. The continued projection of negative and degrading images of women in
media communications - electronic, print, visual and audio - must be changed. 
Print and electronic media in most countries do not provide a balanced picture
of women's diverse lives and contributions to society in a changing world.  In
addition, violent and degrading or pornographic media products are also
negatively affecting women and their participation in society.  Programming
that reinforces women's traditional roles can be equally limiting.  The world-
wide trend towards consumerism has created a climate in which advertisements
and commercial messages often portray women primarily as consumers and target
girls and women of all ages inappropriately.

237. Women should be empowered by enhancing their skills, knowledge and
access to information technology.  This will strengthen their ability to
combat negative portrayals of women internationally and to challenge instances
of abuse of the power of an increasingly important industry.  Self-regulatory
mechanisms for the media need to be created and strengthened and approaches
developed to eliminate gender-biased programming.  Most women, especially in
developing countries, are not able to access effectively the expanding
electronic information highways and therefore cannot establish networks that
will provide them with alternative sources of information.  Women therefore
need to be involved in decision-making regarding the development of the new
technologies in order to participate fully in their growth and impact.

238. In addressing the issue of the mobilization of the media, Governments
and other actors should promote an active and visible policy of mainstreaming
a gender perspective in policies and programmes.


         Strategic objective J.1.  Increase the participation and access
                                   of women to expression and decision-
                                   making in and through the media and
                                   new technologies of communication

Actions to be taken

239. By Governments:

     (a) Support women's education, training and employment to promote and
         ensure women's equal access to all areas and levels of the media;

     (b) Support research into all aspects of women and the media so as to
         define areas needing attention and action and review existing media
         policies with a view to integrating a gender perspective;

     (c) Promote women's full and equal participation in the media, including
         management, programming, education, training and research;

     (d) Aim at gender balance in the appointment of women and men to all
         advisory, management, regulatory or monitoring bodies, including
         those connected to the private and State or public media;

     (e) Encourage, to the extent consistent with freedom of expression,
         these bodies to increase the number of programmes for and by women
         to see to it that women's needs and concerns are properly addressed;

     (f) Encourage and recognize women's media networks, including electronic
         networks and other new technologies of communication, as a means for
         the dissemination of information and the exchange of views,
         including at the international level, and support women's groups
         active in all media work and systems of communications to that end;

     (g) Encourage and provide the means or incentives for the creative use
         of programmes in the national media for the dissemination of
         information on various cultural forms of indigenous people and the
         development of social and educational issues in this regard within
         the framework of national law;

     (h) Guarantee the freedom of the media and its subsequent protection
         within the framework of national law and encourage, consistent with
         freedom of expression, the positive involvement of the media in
         development and social issues.

240. By national and international media systems:

         Develop, consistent with freedom of expression, regulatory
         mechanisms, including voluntary ones, that promote balanced and
         diverse portrayals of women by the media and international
         communication systems and that promote increased participation by
         women and men in production and decision-making.

241. By Governments, as appropriate, or national machinery for the
advancement of women:

     (a) Encourage the development of educational and training programmes for
         women in order to produce information for the mass media, including
         funding of experimental efforts, and the use of the new technologies
         of communication, cybernetics space and satellite, whether public or
         private;

     (b) Encourage the use of communication systems, including new
         technologies, as a means of strengthening women's participation in
         democratic processes;

     (c) Facilitate the compilation of a directory of women media experts;

     (d) Encourage the participation of women in the development of
         professional guidelines and codes of conduct or other appropriate
         self-regulatory mechanisms to promote balanced and non-stereotyped
         portrayals of women by the media.

242. By non-governmental organizations and media professional associations:

     (a) Encourage the establishment of media watch groups that can monitor
         the media and consult with the media to ensure that women's needs
         and concerns are properly reflected;

     (b) Train women to make greater use of information technology for
         communication and the media, including at the international level;

     (c) Create networks among and develop information programmes for
         non-governmental organizations, women's organizations and
         professional media organizations in order to recognize the specific
         needs of women in the media, and facilitate the increased
         participation of women in communication, in particular at the
         international level, in support of South-South and North-South
         dialogue among and between these organizations, inter alia, to
         promote the human rights of women and equality between women and
         men;

     (d) Encourage the media industry and education and media training
         institutions to develop, in appropriate languages, traditional,
         indigenous and other ethnic forms of media, such as story-telling,
         drama, poetry and song, reflecting their cultures, and utilize these
         forms of communication to disseminate information on development and
         social issues.


         Strategic objective J.2.  Promote a balanced and non-stereotyped
                                   portrayal of women in the media

Actions to be taken

243. By Governments and international organizations, to the extent consistent
with freedom of expression:

     (a) Promote research and implementation of a strategy of information,
         education and communication aimed at promoting a balanced portrayal
         of women and girls and their multiple roles;

     (b) Encourage the media and advertising agencies to develop specific
         programmes to raise awareness of the Platform for Action;

     (c) Encourage gender-sensitive training for media professionals,
         including media owners and managers, to encourage the creation and
         use of non-stereotyped, balanced and diverse images of women in the
         media;

     (d) Encourage the media to refrain from presenting women as inferior
         beings and exploiting them as sexual objects and commodities, rather
         than presenting them as creative human beings, key actors and
         contributors to and beneficiaries of the process of development;

     (e) Promote the concept that the sexist stereotypes displayed in the
         media are gender discriminatory, degrading in nature and offensive; 

     (f) Take effective measures or institute such measures, including
         appropriate legislation against pornography and the projection of
         violence against women and children in the media.

244. By the mass media and advertising organizations:

     (a) Develop, consistent with freedom of expression, professional
         guidelines and codes of conduct and other forms of self-regulation
         to promote the presentation of non-stereotyped images of women;

     (b) Establish, consistent with freedom of expression, professional
         guidelines and codes of conduct that address violent, degrading or
         pornographic materials concerning women in the media, including
         advertising;

     (c) Develop a gender perspective on all issues of concern to
         communities, consumers and civil society;

     (d) Increase women's participation in decision-making at all levels of
         the media.

245. By the media, non-governmental organizations and the private sector, in
collaboration, as appropriate, with national machinery for the advancement of
women:

     (a) Promote the equal sharing of family responsibilities through media
         campaigns that emphasize gender equality and non-stereotyped gender
         roles of women and men within the family and that disseminate
         information aimed at eliminating spousal and child abuse and all
         forms of violence against women, including domestic violence;

     (b) Produce and/or disseminate media materials on women leaders,
         inter alia, as leaders who bring to their positions of leadership
         many different life experiences, including but not limited to their
         experiences in balancing work and family responsibilities, as
         mothers, as professionals, as managers and as entrepreneurs, to
         provide role models, particularly to young women;

     (c) Promote extensive campaigns, making use of public and private
         educational programmes, to disseminate information about and
         increase awareness of the human rights of women;

     (d) Support the development of and finance, as appropriate, alternative
         media and the use of all means of communication to disseminate
         information to and about women and their concerns;

     (e) Develop approaches and train experts to apply gender analysis with
         regard to media programmes.


                         K.  Women and the environment

246. Human beings are at the centre of concern for sustainable development. 
They are entitled to a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature. 
Women have an essential role to play in the development of sustainable and
ecologically sound consumption and production patterns and approaches to
natural resource management, as was recognized at the United Nations
Conference on Environment and Development and the International Conference on
Population and Development and reflected throughout Agenda 21.  Awareness of
resource depletion, the degradation of natural systems and the dangers of
polluting substances has increased markedly in the past decade.  These
worsening conditions are destroying fragile ecosystems and displacing
communities, especially women, from productive activities and are an
increasing threat to a safe and healthy environment.  Poverty and
environmental degradation are closely interrelated.  While poverty results in
certain kinds of environmental stress, the major cause of the continued
deterioration of the global environment is the unsustainable pattern of
consumption and production, particularly in industrialized countries, which is
a matter of grave concern, aggravating poverty and imbalances.  Rising
sealevels as a result of global warming cause a grave and immediate threat to
people living in island countries and coastal areas.  The use of ozone-
depleting substances, such as products with chlorofluorocarbons, halons and
methyl bromides (from which plastics and foams are made), are severely
affecting the atmosphere, thus allowing excessive levels of harmful
ultraviolet rays to reach the Earth's surface.  This has severe effects on
people's health such as higher rates of skin cancer, eye damage and weakened
immune systems.  It also has severe effects on the environment, including harm
to crops and ocean life.

247. All States and all people shall cooperate in the essential task of
eradicating poverty as an indispensable requirement for sustainable
development, in order to decrease the disparities in standards of living and
better meet the needs of the majority of the people of the world.  Hurricanes,
typhoons and other natural disasters and, in addition, the destruction of
resources, violence, displacements and other effects associated with war,
armed and other conflicts, the use and testing of nuclear weaponry, and
foreign occupation can also contribute to environmental degradation.  The
deterioration of natural resources displaces communities, especially women,
from income-generating activities while greatly adding to unremunerated work. 
In both urban and rural areas, environmental degradation results in negative
effects on the health, well-being and quality of life of the population at
large, especially girls and women of all ages.  Particular attention and
recognition should be given to the role and special situation of women living
in rural areas and those working in the agricultural sector, where access to
training, land, natural and productive resources, credit, development
programmes and cooperative structures can help them increase their
participation in sustainable development.  Environmental risks in the home and
workplace may have a disproportionate impact on women's health because of
women's different susceptibilities to the toxic effects of various chemicals. 
These risks to women's health are particularly high in urban areas, as well as
in low-income areas where there is a high concentration of polluting
industrial facilities.

248. Through their management and use of natural resources, women provide
sustenance to their families and communities.  As consumers and producers,
caretakers of their families and educators, women play an important role in
promoting sustainable development through their concern for the quality and
sustainability of life for present and future generations.  Governments have
expressed their commitment to creating a new development paradigm that
integrates environmental sustainability with gender equality and justice
within and between generations as contained in chapter 24 of Agenda 21. 19/

249. Women remain largely absent at all levels of policy formulation and
decision-making in natural resource and environmental management,
conservation, protection and rehabilitation, and their experience and skills
in advocacy for and monitoring of proper natural resource management too often
remain marginalized in policy-making and decision-making bodies, as well as in
educational institutions and environment-related agencies at the managerial
level.  Women are rarely trained as professional natural resource managers
with policy-making capacities, such as land-use planners, agriculturalists,
foresters, marine scientists and environmental lawyers.  Even in cases where
women are trained as professional natural resource managers, they are often
underrepresented in formal institutions with policy-making capacities at the
national, regional and international levels.  Often women are not equal
participants in the management of financial and corporate institutions whose
decision-making most significantly affects environmental quality. 
Furthermore, there are institutional weaknesses in coordination between
women's non-governmental organizations and national institutions dealing with
environmental issues, despite the recent rapid growth and visibility of
women's non-governmental organizations working on these issues at all levels.

250. Women have often played leadership roles or taken the lead in promoting
an environmental ethic, reducing resource use, and reusing and recycling
resources to minimize waste and excessive consumption.  Women can have a
particularly powerful role in influencing sustainable consumption decisions. 
In addition, women's contributions to environmental management, including
through grass-roots and youth campaigns to protect the environment, have often
taken place at the local level, where decentralized action on environmental
issues is most needed and decisive.  Women, especially indigenous women, have
particular knowledge of ecological linkages and fragile ecosystem management. 
Women in many communities provide the main labour force for subsistence
production, including production of seafood; hence, their role is crucial to
the provision of food and nutrition, the enhancement of the subsistence and
informal sectors and the preservation of the environment.  In certain regions,
women are generally the most stable members of the community, as men often
pursue work in distant locations, leaving women to safeguard the natural
environment and ensure adequate and sustainable resource allocation within the
household and the community.

251. The strategic actions needed for sound environmental management require
a holistic, multidisciplinary and intersectoral approach.  Women's
participation and leadership are essential to every aspect of that approach. 
The recent United Nations global conferences on development, as well as
regional preparatory conferences for the Fourth World Conference on Women,
have all acknowledged that sustainable development policies that do not
involve women and men alike will not succeed in the long run.  They have
called for the effective participation of women in the generation of knowledge
and environmental education in decision-making and management at all levels. 
Women's experiences and contributions to an ecologically sound environment
must therefore be central to the agenda for the twenty-first century. 
Sustainable development will be an elusive goal unless women's contribution to
environmental management is recognized and supported.

252. In addressing the lack of adequate recognition and support for women's
contribution to conservation and management of natural resources and
safeguarding the environment, Governments and other actors should promote an
active and visible policy of mainstreaming a gender perspective in all
policies and programmes, including, as appropriate, an analysis of the effects
on women and men, respectively, before decisions are taken.


        Strategic objective K.1.  Involve women actively in environmental
                                  decision-making at all levels

Actions to be taken

253. By Governments, at all levels, including municipal authorities, as
appropriate:

     (a) Ensure opportunities for women, including indigenous women, to
         participate in environmental decision-making at all levels,
         including as managers, designers and planners, and as implementers
         and evaluators of environmental projects;

     (b) Facilitate and increase women's access to information and education,
         including in the areas of science, technology and economics, thus
         enhancing their knowledge, skills and opportunities for
         participation in environmental decisions;

     (c) Encourage, subject to national legislation and consistent with the
         Convention on Biological Diversity, 35/ the effective protection and
         use of the knowledge, innovations and practices of women of
         indigenous and local communities, including practices relating to
         traditional medicines, biodiversity and indigenous technologies, and
         endeavour to ensure that these are respected, maintained, promoted
         and preserved in an ecologically sustainable manner, and promote
         their wider application with the approval and involvement of the
         holders of such knowledge; in addition, safeguard the existing
         intellectual property rights of these women as protected under
         national and international law; work actively, where necessary, to
         find additional ways and means for the effective protection and use
         of such knowledge, innovations and practices, subject to national
         legislation and consistent with the Convention on Biological
         Diversity and relevant international law, and encourage fair and
         equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of such
         knowledge, innovation and practices;

     (d) Take appropriate measures to reduce risks to women from identified
         environmental hazards at home, at work and in other environments,
         including appropriate application of clean technologies, taking into
         account the precautionary approach agreed to in the Rio Declaration
         on Environment and Development; 18/

     (e) Take measures to integrate a gender perspective in the design and
         implementation of, among other things, environmentally sound and
         sustainable resource management mechanisms, production techniques
         and infrastructure development in rural and urban areas;

     (f) Take measures to empower women as producers and consumers so that
         they can take effective environmental actions, along with men, in
         their homes, communities and workplaces;

     (g) Promote the participation of local communities, particularly women,
         in identification of public service needs, spatial planning and the
         provision and design of urban infrastructure.

254. By Governments and international organizations and private sector
institutions, as appropriate:

     (a) Take gender impact into consideration in the work of the Commission
         on Sustainable Development and other appropriate United Nations
         bodies and in the activities of international financial
         institutions;

     (b) Promote the involvement of women and the incorporation of a gender
         perspective in the design, approval and execution of projects funded
         under the Global Environment Facility and other appropriate United
         Nations organizations;

     (c) Encourage the design of projects in the areas of concern to the
         Global Environment Facility that would benefit women and projects
         managed by women;

     (d) Establish strategies and mechanisms to increase the proportion of
         women, particularly at grass-roots levels, involved as decision
         makers, planners, managers, scientists and technical advisers and as
         beneficiaries in the design, development and implementation of
         policies and programmes for natural resource management and
         environmental protection and conservation;

     (e) Encourage social, economic, political and scientific institutions to
         address environmental degradation and the resulting impact on women.

255. By non-governmental organizations and the private sector:

     (a) Assume advocacy of environmental and natural resource management
         issues of concern to women and provide information to contribute to
         resource mobilization for environmental protection and conservation;

     (b) Facilitate the access of women agriculturists, fishers and
         pastoralists to knowledge, skills, marketing services and
         environmentally sound technologies to support and strengthen their
         crucial roles and their expertise in resource management and the
         conservation of biological diversity.


       Strategic objective K.2.  Integrate gender concerns and perspectives
                                 in policies and programmes for sustainable
                                 development

Actions to be taken

256. By Governments:

     (a) Integrate women, including indigenous women, their perspectives and
         knowledge, on an equal basis with men, in decision-making regarding
         sustainable resource management and the development of policies and
         programmes for sustainable development, including in particular
         those designed to address and prevent environmental degradation of
         the land;

     (b) Evaluate policies and programmes in terms of environmental impact
         and women's equal access to and use of natural resources;

     (c) Ensure adequate research to assess how and to what extent women are
         particularly susceptible or exposed to environmental degradation and
         hazards, including, as necessary, research and data collection on
         specific groups of women, particularly women with low income,
         indigenous women and women belonging to minorities;

     (d) Integrate rural women's traditional knowledge and practices of
         sustainable resource use and management in the development of
         environmental management and extension programmes;

     (e) Integrate the results of gender-sensitive research into mainstream
         policies with a view to developing sustainable human settlements;

     (f) Promote knowledge of and sponsor research on the role of women,
         particularly rural and indigenous women, in food gathering and
         production, soil conservation, irrigation, watershed management,
         sanitation, coastal zone and marine resource management, integrated
         pest management, land-use planning, forest conservation and
         community forestry, fisheries, natural disaster prevention, and new
         and renewable sources of energy, focusing particularly on indigenous
         women's knowledge and experience;

     (g) Develop a strategy for change to eliminate all obstacles to women's
         full and equal participation in sustainable development and equal
         access to and control over resources;

     (h) Promote the education of girls and women of all ages in science,
         technology, economics and other disciplines relating to the natural
         environment so that they can make informed choices and offer
         informed input in determining local economic, scientific and
         environmental priorities for the management and appropriate use of
         natural and local resources and ecosystems;

     (i) Develop programmes to involve female professionals and scientists,
         as well as technical, administrative and clerical workers, in
         environmental management, develop training programmes for girls and
         women in these fields, expand opportunities for the hiring and
         promotion of women in these fields and implement special measures to
         advance women's expertise and participation in these activities;

     (j) Identify and promote environmentally sound technologies that have
         been designed, developed and improved in consultation with women and
         that are appropriate to both women and men;

     (k) Support the development of women's equal access to housing
         infrastructure, safe water, and sustainable and affordable energy
         technologies, such as wind, solar, biomass and other renewable
         sources, through participatory needs assessments, energy planning
         and policy formulation at the local and national levels;

     (l) Ensure that clean water is available and accessible to all by the
         year 2000 and that environmental protection and conservation plans
         are designed and implemented to restore polluted water systems and
         rebuild damaged watersheds.

257. By international organizations, non-governmental organizations and
private sector institutions:

     (a) Involve women in the communication industries in raising awareness
         regarding environmental issues, especially on the environmental and
         health impacts of products, technologies and industry processes;

     (b) Encourage consumers to use their purchasing power to promote the
         production of environmentally safe products and encourage investment
         in environmentally sound and productive agricultural, fisheries,
         commercial and industrial activities and technologies;

     (c) Support women's consumer initiatives by promoting the marketing of
         organic food and recycling facilities, product information and
         product labelling, including labelling of toxic chemical and
         pesticide containers with language and symbols that are understood
         by consumers, regardless of age and level of literacy.


        Strategic objective K.3.  Strengthen or establish mechanisms at the
                                  national, regional and international
                                  levels to assess the impact of development
                                  and environmental policies on women

Actions to be taken

258. By Governments, regional and international organizations and
non-governmental organizations, as appropriate:

     (a) Provide technical assistance to women, particularly in developing
         countries, in the sectors of agriculture, fisheries, small
         enterprises, trade and industry to ensure the continuing promotion
         of human resource development and the development of environmentally
         sound technologies and of women's entrepreneurship;

     (b) Develop gender-sensitive databases, information and monitoring
         systems and participatory action-oriented research, methodologies
         and policy analyses, with the collaboration of academic institutions
         and local women researchers, on the following:

         (i)   Knowledge and experience on the part of women concerning the
               management and conservation of natural resources for
               incorporation in the databases and information systems for
               sustainable development;

         (ii)  The impact on women of environmental and natural resource
               degradation, deriving from, inter alia, unsustainable
               production and consumption patterns, drought, poor quality
               water, global warming, desertification, sealevel rise,
               hazardous waste, natural disasters, toxic chemicals and
               pesticide residues, radioactive waste, armed conflicts and its
               consequences;

        (iii)  Analysis of the structural links between gender relations,
               environment and development, with special emphasis on
               particular sectors, such as agriculture, industry, fisheries,
               forestry, environmental health, biological diversity, climate,
               water resources and sanitation;

         (iv)  Measures to develop and include environmental, economic,
               cultural, social and gender-sensitive analyses as an essential
               step in the development and monitoring of programmes and
               policies;

         (v)   Programmes to create rural and urban training, research and
               resource centres that will disseminate environmentally sound
               technologies to women;

     (c) Ensure the full compliance with relevant international obligations,
         including where relevant, the Basel Convention and other conventions
         relating to the transboundary movements of hazardous wastes (which
         include toxic wastes) and the Code of Practice of the International
         Atomic Energy Agency relating to the movement of radioactive waste;
         enact and enforce regulations for environmentally sound management
         related to safe storage and movements; consider taking action
         towards the prohibition of those movements that are unsafe and
         insecure; ensure the strict control and management of hazardous
         wastes and radioactive waste, in accordance with relevant
         international and regional obligations and eliminate the exportation
         of such wastes to countries that, individually or through
         international agreements, prohibit their importation;

     (d) Promote coordination within and among institutions to implement the
         Platform for Action and chapter 24 of Agenda 21 by, inter alia,
         requesting the Commission on Sustainable Development, through the
         Economic and Social Council, to seek input from the Commission on
         the Status of Women when reviewing the implementation of Agenda 21
         with regard to women and the environment.


                              L.  The girl child

259. The Convention on the Rights of the Child recognizes that "States
Parties shall respect and ensure the rights set forth in the present
Convention to each child within their jurisdiction without discrimination of
any kind, irrespective of the child's or his or her parent's or legal
guardian's race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion,
national, ethnic or social origin, property, disability, birth or status"
(art. 2, para. 1). 11/  However, in many countries available indicators show
that the girl child is discriminated against from the earliest stages of life,
through her childhood and into adulthood.  In some areas of the world, men
outnumber women by 5 in every 100.  The reasons for the discrepancy include,
among other things, harmful attitudes and practices, such as female genital
mutilation, son preference - which results in female infanticide and prenatal
sex selection - early marriage, including child marriage, violence against
women, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, discrimination against girls in food
allocation and other practices related to health and well-being.  As a result,
fewer girls than boys survive into adulthood.

260. Girls are often treated as inferior and are socialized to put themselves
last, thus undermining their self-esteem.  Discrimination and neglect in
childhood can initiate a lifelong downward spiral of deprivation and exclusion
from the social mainstream.  Initiatives should be taken to prepare girls to
participate actively, effectively and equally with boys at all levels of
social, economic, political and cultural leadership.

261. Gender-biased educational processes, including curricula, educational
materials and practices, teachers' attitudes and classroom interaction,
reinforce existing gender inequalities.

262. Girls and adolescents may receive a variety of conflicting and confusing
messages on their gender roles from their parents, teachers, peers and the
media.  Women and men need to work together with children and youth to break
down persistent gender stereotypes, taking into account the rights of the
child and the responsibilities, rights and duties of parents as stated in
paragraph 267 below.

263. Although the number of educated children has grown in the past 20 years
in some countries, boys have proportionately fared much better than girls.  In
1990, 130 million children had no access to primary school; of these,
81 million were girls.  This can be attributed to such factors as customary
attitudes, child labour, early marriages, lack of funds and lack of adequate
schooling facilities, teenage pregnancies and gender inequalities in society
at large as well as in the family as defined in paragraph 29 above.  In some
countries the shortage of women teachers can inhibit the enrolment of girls. 
In many cases, girls start to undertake heavy domestic chores at a very early
age and are expected to manage both educational and domestic responsibilities,
often resulting in poor scholastic performance and an early drop-out from
schooling.

264. The percentage of girls enrolled in secondary school remains
significantly low in many countries.  Girls are often not encouraged or given
the opportunity to pursue scientific and technological training and education,
which limits the knowledge they require for their daily lives and their
employment opportunities.

265. Girls are less encouraged than boys to participate in and learn about
the social, economic and political functioning of society, with the result
that they are not offered the same opportunities as boys to take part in
decision-making processes.

266. Existing discrimination against the girl child in her access to
nutrition and physical and mental health services endangers her current and
future health.  An estimated 450 million adult women in developing countries
are stunted as a result of childhood protein-energy malnutrition.

267. The International Conference on Population and Development recognized,
in paragraph 7.3 of the Programme of Action, 14/ that "full attention should
be given to the promotion of mutually respectful and equitable gender
relations and particularly to meeting the educational and service needs of
adolescents to enable them to deal in a positive and responsible way with
their sexuality", taking into account the rights of the child to access to
information, privacy, confidentiality, respect and informed consent, as well
as the responsibilities, rights and duties of parents and legal guardians to
provide, in a manner consistent with the evolving capacities of the child,
appropriate direction and guidance in the exercise by the child of the rights
recognized in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and in conformity
with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against
Women.  In all actions concerning children, the best interests of the child
shall be a primary consideration.  Support should be given to integral sexual
education for young people with parental support and guidance that stresses
the responsibility of males for their own sexuality and fertility and that
help them exercise their responsibilities.

268. More than 15 million girls aged 15 to 19 give birth each year. 
Motherhood at a very young age entails complications during pregnancy and
delivery and a risk of maternal death that is much greater than average.  The
children of young mothers have higher levels of morbidity and mortality. 
Early child-bearing continues to be an impediment to improvements in the
educational, economic and social status of women in all parts of the world. 
Overall, early marriage and early motherhood can severely curtail educational
and employment opportunities and are likely to have a long-term adverse impact
on their and their children's quality of life.

269. Sexual violence and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS,
have a devastating effect on children's health, and girls are more vulnerable
than boys to the consequences of unprotected and premature sexual relations. 
Girls often face pressures to engage in sexual activity.  Due to such factors
as their youth, social pressures, lack of protective laws, or failure to
enforce laws, girls are more vulnerable to all kinds of violence, particularly
sexual violence, including rape, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation,
trafficking, possibly the sale of their organs and tissues, and forced labour.

270. The girl child with disabilities faces additional barriers and needs to
be ensured non-discrimination and equal enjoyment of all human rights and
fundamental freedoms in accordance with the Standard Rules on the Equalization
of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities. 30/

271. Some children are particularly vulnerable, especially the abandoned,
homeless and displaced, street children, children in areas in conflict, and
children who are discriminated against because they belong to an ethnic or
racial minority group.

272. All barriers must therefore be eliminated to enable girls without
exception to develop their full potential and skills through equal access to
education and training, nutrition, physical and mental health care and related
information.

273. In addressing issues concerning children and youth, Governments should
promote an active and visible policy of mainstreaming a gender perspective
into all policies and programmes so that before decisions are taken, an
analysis is made of the effects on girls and boys, respectively.




          Strategic objective L.1.  Eliminate all forms of discrimination
                                    against the girl child

Actions to be taken

274. By Governments:

     (a) By States that have not signed or ratified the Convention on the
         Rights of the Child, take urgent measures towards signing and
         ratifying the Convention, bearing in mind the strong exhortation
         made at the World Conference on Human Rights to sign it before the
         end of 1995, and by States that have signed and ratified the
         Convention, ensure its full implementation through the adoption of
         all necessary legislative, administrative and other measures and by
         fostering an enabling environment that encourages full respect for
         the rights of children;

     (b) Consistent with article 7 of the Convention on the Rights of the
         Child, 11/ take measures to ensure that a child is registered
         immediately after birth and has the right from birth to a name, the
         right to acquire a nationality and, as far as possible, the right to
         know and be cared for by his or her parents; 

     (c) Take steps to ensure that children receive appropriate financial
         support from their parents, by, among other measures, enforcing
         child-support laws;

     (d) Eliminate the injustice and obstacles in relation to inheritance
         faced by the girl child so that all children may enjoy their rights
         without discrimination, by, inter alia, enacting, as appropriate,
         and enforcing legislation that guarantees equal right to succession
         and ensures equal right to inherit, regardless of the sex of the
         child;

     (e) Enact and strictly enforce laws to ensure that marriage is only
         entered into with the free and full consent of the intending
         spouses;  in addition, enact and strictly enforce laws concerning
         the minimum legal age of consent and the minimum age for marriage
         and raise the minimum age for marriage where necessary;

     (f) Develop and implement comprehensive policies, plans of action and
         programmes for the survival, protection, development and advancement
         of the girl child to promote and protect the full enjoyment of her
         human rights and to ensure equal opportunities for girls; these
         plans should form an integral part of the total development process;

     (g) Ensure the disaggregation by sex and age of all data related to
         children in the health, education and other sectors in order to
         include a gender perspective in planning, implementation and
         monitoring of such programmes.

275. By Governments and international and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Disaggregate information and data on children by sex and age,
         undertake research on the situation of girls and integrate, as
         appropriate, the results in the formulation of policies, programmes
         and decision-making for the advancement of the girl child;

     (b) Generate social support for the enforcement of laws on the minimum
         legal age for marriage, in particular by providing educational
         opportunities for girls.


          Strategic objective L.2.  Eliminate negative cultural attitudes
                                    and practices against girls

Actions to be taken

276. By Governments:

     (a) Encourage and support, as appropriate, non-governmental
         organizations and community-based organizations in their efforts to
         promote changes in negative attitudes and practices towards girls;

     (b) Set up educational programmes and develop teaching materials and
         textbooks that will sensitize and inform adults about the harmful
         effects of certain traditional or customary practices on girl
         children;

     (c) Develop and adopt curricula, teaching materials and textbooks to
         improve the self-image, lives and work opportunities of girls,
         particularly in areas where women have traditionally been
         underrepresented, such as mathematics, science and technology;

     (d) Take steps so that tradition and religion and their expressions are
         not a basis for discrimination against girls.

277. By Governments and, as appropriate, international and non-governmental
organizations:

     (a) Promote an educational setting that eliminates all barriers that
         impede the schooling of married and/or pregnant girls and young
         mothers, including, as appropriate, affordable and physically
         accessible child-care facilities and parental education to encourage
         those who have responsibilities for the care of their children and
         siblings during their school years to return to, or continue with,
         and complete schooling;

     (b) Encourage educational institutions and the media to adopt and
         project balanced and non-stereotyped images of girls and boys, and
         work to eliminate child pornography and degrading and violent
         portrayals of the girl child;

     (c) Eliminate all forms of discrimination against the girl child and the
         root causes of son preference, which result in harmful and unethical
         practices such as prenatal sex selection and female infanticide;
         this is often compounded by the increasing use of technologies to
         determine foetal sex, resulting in abortion of female foetuses;

     (d) Develop policies and programmes, giving priority to formal and
         informal education programmes that support girls and enable them to
         acquire knowledge, develop self-esteem and take responsibility for
         their own lives; and place special focus on programmes to educate
         women and men, especially parents, on the importance of girls'
         physical and mental health and well-being, including the elimination
         of discrimination against girls in food allocation, early marriage,
         violence against girls, female genital mutilation, child
         prostitution, sexual abuse, rape and incest.


          Strategic objective L.3.  Promote and protect the rights of the
                                    girl child and increase awareness of
                                    her needs and potential

Actions to be taken

278. By Governments and international and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Generate awareness of the disadvantaged situation of girls among
         policy makers, planners, administrators and implementors at all
         levels, as well as within households and communities;

     (b) Make the girl child, particularly the girl child in difficult
         circumstances, aware of her own potential, educate her about the
         rights guaranteed to her under all international human rights
         instruments, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child,
         legislation enacted for her and the various measures undertaken by
         both governmental and non-governmental organizations working to
         improve her status;

     (c) Educate women, men, girls and boys to promote girls' status and
         encourage them to work towards mutual respect and equal partnership
         between girls and boys;

     (d) Facilitate the equal provision of appropriate services and devices
         to girls with disabilities and provide their families with related
         support services, as appropriate.


         Strategic objective L.4.  Eliminate discrimination against girls
                                   in education, skills development and
                                   training

Actions to be taken

279. By Governments:

     (a) Ensure universal and equal access to and completion of primary
         education by all children and eliminate the existing gap between
         girls and boys, as stipulated in article 28 of the Convention on the
         Rights of the Child; 11/ similarly, ensure equal access to secondary
         education by the year 2005 and equal access to higher education,
         including vocational and technical education, for all girls and
         boys, including the disadvantaged and gifted;

     (b) Take steps to integrate functional literacy and numeracy programmes,
         particularly for out-of-school girls in development programmes;

     (c) Promote human rights education in educational programmes and include
         in human rights education the fact that the human rights of women
         and the girl child are an inalienable, integral and indivisible part
         of universal human rights;

     (d) Increase enrolment and improve retention rates of girls by
         allocating appropriate budgetary resources and by enlisting the
         support of the community and parents through campaigns and flexible
         school schedules, incentives, scholarships, access programmes for
         out-of-school girls and other measures;

     (e) Develop training programmes and materials for teachers and
         educators, raising awareness about their own role in the educational
         process, with a view to providing them with effective strategies for
         gender-sensitive teaching;

     (f) Take actions to ensure that female teachers and professors have the
         same possibilities and status as male teachers and professors.

280. By Governments and international and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Provide education and skills training to increase girls'
         opportunities for employment and access to decision-making
         processes;

     (b) Provide education to increase girls' knowledge and skills related to
         the functioning of economic, financial and political systems;

     (c) Ensure access to appropriate education and skills-training for girl
         children with disabilities for their full participation in life;

     (d) Promote the full and equal participation of girls in extracurricular
         activities, such as sports, drama and cultural activities.


         Strategic objective L.5.  Eliminate discrimination against girls
                                   in health and nutrition

Actions to be taken

281. By Governments and international and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Provide public information on the removal of discriminatory
         practices against girls in food allocation, nutrition and access to
         health services;

     (b) Sensitize the girl child, parents, teachers and society concerning
         good general health and nutrition and raise awareness of the health
         dangers and other problems connected with early pregnancies;

     (c) Strengthen and reorient health education and health services,
         particularly primary health care programmes, including sexual and
         reproductive health, and design quality health programmes that meet
         the physical and mental needs of girls and that attend to the needs
         of young, expectant and nursing mothers;

     (d) Establish peer education and outreach programmes with a view to
         strengthening individual and collective action to reduce the
         vulnerability of girls to HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted
         diseases, as agreed to in the Programme of Action of the
         International Conference on Population and Development and as
         established in the report of that Conference, recognizing the
         parental roles referred to in paragraph 267 of the present Platform
         for Action;

     (e) Ensure education and dissemination of information to girls,
         especially adolescent girls, regarding the physiology of
         reproduction, reproductive and sexual health, as agreed to in the
         Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population
         and Development and as established in the report of that Conference,
         responsible family planning practice, family life, reproductive
         health, sexually transmitted diseases, HIV infection and AIDS
         prevention, recognizing the parental roles referred to in
         paragraph 267;

     (f) Include health and nutritional training as an integral part of
         literacy programmes and school curricula starting at the primary
         level for the benefit of the girl child;

     (g) Emphasize the role and responsibility of adolescents in sexual and
         reproductive health and behaviour through the provision of
         appropriate services and counselling, as discussed in paragraph 267;

     (h) Develop information and training programmes for health planners and
         implementors on the special health needs of the girl child;

     (i) Take all the appropriate measures with a view to abolishing
         traditional practices prejudicial to the health of children, as
         stipulated in article 24 of the Convention on the Rights of the
         Child. 11/


           Strategic objective L.6.  Eliminate the economic exploitation
                                     of child labour and protect young
                                     girls at work

Actions to be taken

282. By Governments:

     (a) In conformity with article 32 of the Convention on the Rights of the
         Child, 11/ protect children from economic exploitation and from
         performing any work that is likely to be hazardous or to interfere
         with the child's education, or to be harmful to the child's health
         or physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development;

     (b) Define a minimum age for a child's admission to employment in
         national legislation, in conformity with existing international
         labour standards and the Convention on the Rights of the Child,
         including girls in all sectors of activity;

     (c) Protect young girls at work, inter alia, through:

         (i)   A minimum age or ages for admission to employment;

         (ii)  Strict monitoring of work conditions (respect for work time,
               prohibition of work by children not provided for by national
               legislation, and monitoring of hygiene and health conditions at
               work);

        (iii)  Application of social security coverage;

         (iv)  Establishment of continuous training and education;

     (d) Strengthen, where necessary, legislation governing the work of
         children and provide for appropriate penalties or other sanctions to
         ensure effective enforcement of the legislation;

     (e) Use existing international labour standards, including, as
         appropriate, ILO standards for the protection of working children,
         to guide the formulation of national labour legislation and
         policies.


               Strategic objective L.7.  Eradicate violence against
                                         the girl child

Actions to be taken

283. By Governments and, as appropriate, international and non-governmental
organizations:

     (a) Take effective actions and measures to enact and enforce legislation
         to protect the safety and security of girls from all forms of
         violence at work, including training programmes and support
         programmes, and take measures to eliminate incidents of sexual
         harassment of girls in educational and other institutions;

     (b) Take appropriate legislative, administrative, social and educational
         measures to protect the girl child, in the household and in society,
         from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse,
         neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation,
         including sexual abuse;

     (c) Undertake gender sensitization training for those involved in
         healing and rehabilitation and other assistance programmes for girls
         who are victims of violence and promote programmes of information,
         support and training for such girls;

     (d) Enact and enforce legislation protecting girls from all forms of
         violence, including female infanticide and prenatal sex selection,
         genital mutilation, incest, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, child
         prostitution and child pornography, and develop age-appropriate safe
         and confidential programmes and medical, social and psychological
         support services to assist girls who are subjected to violence.


           Strategic objective L.8.  Promote the girl child's awareness
                                     of and participation in social,
                                     economic and political life

Actions to be taken

284. By Governments and international and non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Provide access for girls to training, information and the media on
         social, cultural, economic and political issues and enable them to
         articulate their views;

     (b) Support non-governmental organizations, in particular youth
         non-governmental organizations, in their efforts to promote the
         equality and participation of girls in society.

          Strategic objective L.9.  Strengthen the role of the family* in
                                    improving the status of the girl child

Actions to be taken

285. By Governments, in cooperation with non-governmental organizations:

     (a) Formulate policies and programmes to help the family, as defined in
         paragraph 29 above, in its supporting, educating and nurturing
         roles, with particular emphasis on the elimination of intra-family
         discrimination against the girl child;

     (b) Provide an environment conducive to the strengthening of the family,
         as defined in paragraph 29 above, with a view to providing
         supportive and preventive measures which protect, respect and
         promote the potential of the girl child;

     (c) Educate and encourage parents and caregivers to treat girls and boys
         equally and to ensure shared responsibilities between girls and boys
         in the family, as defined in paragraph 29 above.

     * As defined in para. 29 above.


                                   Chapter V

                          INSTITUTIONAL ARRANGEMENTS


286. The Platform for Action establishes a set of actions that should lead to
fundamental change.  Immediate action and accountability are essential if the
targets are to be met by the year 2000.  Implementation is primarily the
responsibility of Governments, but is also dependent on a wide range of
institutions in the public, private and non-governmental sectors at the
community, national, subregional/regional and international levels.

287. During the United Nations Decade for Women (1976-1985), many
institutions specifically devoted to the advancement of women were established
at the national, regional and international levels.  At the international
level, the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement
of Women (INSTRAW), the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM),
and the Committee to monitor the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
Discrimination against Women were established.  These entities, along with the
Commission on the Status of Women and its secretariat, the Division for the
Advancement of Women, became the main institutions in the United Nations
specifically devoted to women's advancement globally.  At the national level,
a number of countries established or strengthened national mechanisms to plan,
advocate for and monitor progress in the advancement of women.

288. Implementation of the Platform for Action by national,
subregional/regional and international institutions, both public and private,
would be facilitated by transparency, by increased linkages between networks
and organizations and by a consistent flow of information among all concerned.

Clear objectives and accountability mechanisms are also required.  Links with
other institutions at the national, subregional/regional and international
levels and with networks and organizations devoted to the advancement of women
are needed.

289. Non-governmental and grass-roots organizations have a specific role to
play in creating a social, economic, political and intellectual climate based
on equality between women and men.  Women should be actively involved in the
implementation and monitoring of the Platform for Action.

290. Effective implementation of the Platform will also require changes in
the internal dynamics of institutions and organizations, including values,
behaviour, rules and procedures that are inimical to the advancement of women.

Sexual harassment should be eliminated.

291. National, subregional/regional and international institutions should
have strong and clear mandates and the authority, resources and accountability
mechanisms needed for the tasks set out in the Platform for Action.  Their
methods of operation should ensure efficient and effective implementation of
the Platform.  There should be a clear commitment to international norms and
standards of equality between women and men as a basis for all actions. 

292. To ensure effective implementation of the Platform for Action and to
enhance the work for the advancement of women at the national, subregional/
regional and international levels, Governments, the United Nations system and
all other relevant organizations should promote an active and visible policy
of mainstreaming a gender perspective, inter alia, in the monitoring and
evaluation of all policies and programmes.

                              A.  National level

293. Governments have the primary responsibility for implementing the
Platform for Action.  Commitment at the highest political level is essential
to its implementation, and Governments should take a leading role in
coordinating, monitoring and assessing progress in the advancement of women. 
The Fourth World Conference on Women is a conference of national and
international commitment and action.  This requires commitment from
Governments and the international community.  The Platform for Action is part
of a continuing process and has a catalytic effect as it will contribute to
programmes and practical outcomes for girls and women of all ages.  States and
the international community are encouraged to respond to this challenge by
making commitments for action.  As part of this process, many States have made
commitments for action as reflected, inter alia, in their national statements.

294. National mechanisms and institutions for the advancement of women should
participate in public policy formulation and encourage the implementation of
the Platform for Action through various bodies and institutions, including the
private sector, and, where necessary, should act as a catalyst in developing
new programmes by the year 2000 in areas that are not covered by existing
institutions.

295. The active support and participation of a broad and diverse range of
other institutional actors should be encouraged, including legislative bodies,
academic and research institutions, professional associations, trade unions,
cooperatives, local community groups, non-governmental organizations,
including women's organizations and feminist groups, the media, religious
groups, youth organizations and cultural groups, as well as financial and
non-profit organizations.

296. In order for the Platform for Action to be implemented, it will be
necessary for Governments to establish or improve the effectiveness of
national machineries for the advancement of women at the highest political
level, appropriate intra- and inter-ministerial procedures and staffing, and
other institutions with the mandate and capacity to broaden women's
participation and integrate gender analysis into policies and programmes.  The
first step in this process for all institutions should be to review their
objectives, programmes and operational procedures in terms of the actions
called for in the Platform.  A key activity should be to promote public
awareness and support for the goals of the Platform for Action, inter alia,
through the mass media and public education.

297. As soon as possible, preferably by the end of 1995, Governments, in
consultation with relevant institutions and non-governmental organizations,
should begin to develop implementation strategies for the Platform and,
preferably by the end of 1996, should have developed their strategies or plans
of action.  This planning process should draw upon persons at the highest
level of authority in government and relevant actors in civil society.  These
implementation strategies should be comprehensive, have time-bound targets and
benchmarks for monitoring, and include proposals for allocating or
reallocating resources for implementation.  Where necessary, the support of
the international community could be enlisted, including resources.

298. Non-governmental organizations should be encouraged to contribute to the
design and implementation of these strategies or national plans of action. 
They should also be encouraged to develop their own programmes to complement
government efforts.  Women's organizations and feminist groups, in
collaboration with other non-governmental organizations, should be encouraged
to organize networks, as necessary, and to advocate for and support the
implementation of the Platform for Action by Governments and regional and
international bodies.

299. Governments should commit themselves to gender balance, inter alia,
through the creation of special mechanisms, in all government-appointed
committees, boards and other relevant official bodies, as appropriate, as well
as in all international bodies, institutions and organizations, notably by
presenting and promoting more women candidates.

300.  Regional and international organizations, in particular development
institutions, especially INSTRAW, UNIFEM and bilateral donors, should provide
financial and advisory assistance to national machinery in order to increase
its ability to gather information, develop networks and carry out its mandate,
in addition to strengthening international mechanisms to promote the
advancement of women through their respective mandates, in cooperation with
Governments.


                        B.  Subregional/regional level

301. The regional commissions of the United Nations and other subregional/
regional structures should promote and assist the pertinent national
institutions in monitoring and implementing the global Platform for Action
within their mandates.  This should be done in coordination with the
implementation of the respective regional platforms or plans of action and in
close collaboration with the Commission on the Status of Women, taking into
account the need for a coordinated follow-up to United Nations conferences in
the economic, social, human rights and related fields.

302. In order to facilitate the regional implementation, monitoring and
evaluation process, the Economic and Social Council should consider reviewing
the institutional capacity of the United Nations regional commissions within
their mandates, including their women's units/focal points, to deal with
gender issues in the light of the Platform for Action, as well as the regional
platforms and plans of action.  Consideration should be given, inter alia,
and, where appropriate, to strengthening capacity in this respect.

303. Within their existing mandates and activities, the regional commissions
should mainstream women's issues and gender perspectives and should also
consider the establishment of mechanisms and processes to ensure the
implementation and monitoring of both the Platform for Action and the regional
platforms and plans of action.  The regional commissions should, within their
mandates, collaborate on gender issues with other regional intergovernmental
organizations, non-governmental organizations, financial and research
institutions and the private sector.

304. Regional offices of the specialized agencies of the United Nations
system should, as appropriate, develop and publicize a plan of action for
implementing the Platform for Action, including the identification of time-
frames and resources.  Technical assistance and operational activities at the
regional level should establish well-identified targets for the advancement of
women.  To this end, regular coordination should be undertaken among United
Nations bodies and agencies.

305. Non-governmental organizations within the region should be supported in
their efforts to develop networks to coordinate advocacy and dissemination of
information about the global Platform for Action and the respective regional
platforms or plans of action.


                            C.  International level

                              1.  United Nations

306. The Platform for Action needs to be implemented through the work of all
of the bodies and organizations of the United Nations system during the period
1995-2000, specifically and as an integral part of wider programming.  An
enhanced framework for international cooperation for gender issues must be
developed during the period 1995-2000 in order to ensure the integrated and
comprehensive implementation, follow-up and assessment of the Platform for
Action, taking into account the results of global United Nations summits and
conferences.  The fact that at all of these summits and conferences,
Governments have committed themselves to the empowerment of women in different
areas, makes coordination crucial to the follow-up strategies for this
Platform for Action.  The Agenda for Development and the Agenda for Peace
should take into account the Platform for Action of the Fourth World
Conference on Women.

307. The institutional capacity of the United Nations system to carry out and
coordinate its responsibility for implementing the Platform for Action, as
well as its expertise and working methods to promote the advancement of women,
should be improved.

308. Responsibility for ensuring the implementation of the Platform for
Action and the integration of a gender perspective into all policies and
programmes of the United Nations system must rest at the highest levels.

309. To improve the system's efficiency and effectiveness in providing
support for equality and women's empowerment at the national level and to
enhance its capacity to achieve the objectives of the Platform for Action,
there is a need to renew, reform and revitalize various parts of the United
Nations system.  This would include reviewing and strengthening the strategies
and working methods of different United Nations mechanisms for the advancement
of women with a view to rationalizing and, as appropriate, strengthening their
advisory, catalytic and monitoring functions in relation to mainstream bodies
and agencies.  Women/gender units are important for effective mainstreaming,
but strategies must be further developed to prevent inadvertent
marginalization as opposed to mainstreaming of the gender dimension throughout
all operations.

310. In following up the Fourth World Conference on Women, all entities of
the United Nations system focusing on the advancement of women should have the
necessary resources and support to carry out follow-up activities.  The
efforts of gender focal points within organizations should be well integrated
into overall policy, planning, programming and budgeting.

311. Action must be taken by the United Nations and other international
organizations to eliminate barriers to the advancement of women within their
organizations in accordance with the Platform for Action.

General Assembly

312. The General Assembly, as the highest intergovernmental body in the
United Nations, is the principal policy-making and appraisal organ on matters
relating to the follow-up to the Conference, and as such, should integrate
gender issues throughout its work.  It should appraise progress in the
effective implementation of the Platform for Action, recognizing that these
issues cut across social, political and economic policy.  At its fiftieth
session, in 1995, the General Assembly will have before it the report of the
Fourth World Conference on Women.  In accordance with its resolution 49/161,
it will also examine a report of the Secretary-General on the follow-up to the
Conference, taking into account the recommendations of the Conference.  The
General Assembly should include the follow-up to the Conference as part of its
continuing work on the advancement of women.  In 1996, 1998 and 2000, it
should review the implementation of the Platform for Action.

Economic and Social Council

313. The Economic and Social Council, in the context of its role under the
Charter of the United Nations and in accordance with General Assembly
resolutions 45/264, 46/235 and 48/162, would oversee system-wide coordination
in the implementation of the Platform for Action and make recommendations in
this regard.  The Council should be invited to review the implementation of
the Platform for Action, giving due consideration to the reports of the
Commission on the Status of Women.  As coordinating body, the Council should
be invited to review the mandate of the Commission on the Status of Women,
taking into account the need for effective coordination with other related
commissions and Conference follow-up.  The Council should incorporate gender
issues into its discussion of all policy questions, giving due consideration
to recommendations prepared by the Commission.  It should consider dedicating
at least one high-level segment before the year 2000 to the advancement of
women and implementation of the Platform for Action with the active
involvement and participation, inter alia, of the specialized agencies,
including the World Bank and IMF.

314. The Council should consider dedicating at least one coordination segment
before the year 2000 to coordination of the advancement of women, based on the
revised system-wide medium-term plan for the advancement of women.

315. The Council should consider dedicating at least one operational
activities segment before the year 2000 to the coordination of development
activities related to gender, based on the revised system-wide medium-term
plan for the advancement of women, with a view to instituting guidelines and
procedures for implementation of the Platform for Action by the funds and
programmes of the United Nations system.

316. The Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC) should consider how
its participating entities might best coordinate their activities, inter alia,
through existing procedures at the inter-agency level for ensuring system-wide
coordination to implement and help follow up the objectives of the Platform
for Action.

Commission on the Status of Women

317. The General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council, in accordance
with their respective mandates, are invited to review and strengthen the
mandate of the Commission on the Status of Women, taking into account the
Platform for Action as well as the need for synergy with other related
commissions and Conference follow-up, and for a system-wide approach to its
implementation.

318. As a functional commission assisting the Economic and Social Council,
the Commission on the Status of Women should have a central role in
monitoring, within the United Nations system, the implementation of the
Platform for Action and advising the Council thereon.  It should have a clear
mandate with sufficient human and financial resources, through the
reallocation of resources within the regular budget of the United Nations to
carry the mandate out.

319. The Commission on the Status of Women should assist the Economic and
Social Council in its coordination of the reporting on the implementation of
the Platform for Action with the relevant organizations of the United Nations
system.  The Commission should draw upon inputs from other organizations of
the United Nations system and other sources, as appropriate.

320. The Commission on the Status of Women, in developing its work programme
for the period 1996-2000, should review the critical areas of concern in the
Platform for Action and consider how to integrate in its agenda the follow-up
to the World Conference on Women.  In this context, the Commission on the
Status of Women could consider how it could further develop its catalytic role
in mainstreaming a gender perspective in United Nations activities.

Other functional commissions

321. Within their mandates, other functional commissions of the Economic and
Social Council should also take due account of the Platform for Action and
ensure the integration of gender aspects in their respective work.

Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women and other treaty
bodies

322. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, in
implementing its responsibilities under the Convention on the Elimination of
All Forms of Discrimination against Women, should, within its mandate, take
into account the Platform for Action when considering the reports submitted by
States parties.

323. States parties to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
Discrimination against Women are invited, when reporting under article 18 of
the Convention, to include information on measures taken to implement the
Platform for Action in order to facilitate the Committee on the Elimination of
Discrimination against Women in monitoring effectively women's ability to
enjoy the rights guaranteed by the Convention.

324. The ability of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination
against Women to monitor implementation of the Convention should be
strengthened through the provision of human and financial resources within the
regular budget of the United Nations, including expert legal assistance and,
in accordance with General Assembly resolution 49/164 and the decision made by
the meeting of States parties to the Convention held in May 1995, sufficient
meeting time for the Committee.  The Committee should increase its
coordination with other human rights treaty bodies, taking into account the
recommendations in the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action.

325. Within their mandate, other treaty bodies should also take due account
of the implementation of the Platform for Action and ensure the integration of
the equal status and human rights of women in their work.

United Nations Secretariat

     Office of the Secretary-General

326. The Secretary-General is requested to assume responsibility for
coordination of policy within the United Nations for the implementation of the
Platform for Action and for the mainstreaming of a system-wide gender
perspective in all activities of the United Nations, taking into account the
mandates of the bodies concerned.  The Secretary-General should consider
specific measures for ensuring effective coordination in the implementation of
these objectives.  To this end, the Secretary-General is invited to establish
a high-level post in the office of the Secretary-General, using existing human
and financial resources, to act as the Secretary-General's adviser on gender
issues and to help ensure system-wide implementation of the Platform for
Action in close cooperation with the Division for the Advancement of Women.

     Division for the Advancement of Women

327. The primary function of the Division for the Advancement of Women of the
Department for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development is to provide
substantive servicing to the Commission on the Status of Women and other
intergovernmental bodies when they are concerned with the advancement of
women, as well as to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination
against Women.  It has been designated a focal point for the implementation of
the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women.  In the
light of the review of the mandate of the Commission on the Status of Women,
as set out in paragraph 313 above, the functions of the Division for the
Advancement of Women will also need to be assessed.  The Secretary-General is
requested to ensure more effective functioning of the Division by, inter alia,
providing sufficient human and financial resources within the regular budget
of the United Nations.

328. The Division should examine the obstacles to the advancement of women
through the application of gender-impact analysis in policy studies for the
Commission on the Status of Women and through support to other subsidiary
bodies.  After the Fourth World Conference on Women it should play a
coordinating role in preparing the revision of the system-wide medium-term
plan for the advancement of women for the period 1996-2001 and should continue
serving as the secretariat for inter-agency coordination for the advancement
of women.  It should continue to maintain a flow of information with national
commissions, national institutions for the advancement of women and
non-governmental organizations with regard to implementation of the Platform
for Action.

     Other units of the United Nations Secretariat

329. The various units of the United Nations Secretariat should examine their
programmes to determine how they can best contribute to the coordinated
implementation of the Platform for Action.  Proposals for implementation of
the Platform need to be reflected in the revision of the system-wide
medium-term plan for the advancement of women for the period 1996-2001, as
well as in the proposed United Nations medium-term plan for the period
1998-2002.  The content of the actions will depend on the mandates of the
bodies concerned.

330. Existing and new linkages should be developed throughout the Secretariat
in order to ensure that the gender perspective is introduced as a central
dimension in all activities of the Secretariat.

331. The Office of Human Resources Management should, in collaboration with
programme managers world wide, and in accordance with the strategic plan of
action for the improvement of the status of women in the Secretariat
(1995-2000), continue to accord priority to the recruitment and promotion of
women in posts subject to geographical distribution, particularly in senior
policy-level and decision-making posts, in order to achieve the goals set out
in General Assembly resolutions 45/125 and 45/239 C and reaffirmed in General
Assembly resolutions 46/100, 47/93, 48/106 and 49/167.  The training service
should design and conduct regular gender-sensitivity training or include
gender-sensitivity training in all of its activities.

332. The Department of Public Information should seek to integrate a gender
perspective in its general information activities and, within existing
resources, strengthen and improve its programmes on women and the girl child. 
To this end, the Department should formulate a multimedia communications
strategy to support the implementation of the Platform for Action, taking new
technology fully into account.  Regular outputs of the Department should
promote the goals of the Platform, particularly in developing countries.

333. The Statistical Division of the Department for Economic and Social
Information and Policy Analysis should have an important coordinating role in
international work in statistics, as described above in chapter IV, strategic
objective H.3.

International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women

334. INSTRAW has a mandate to promote research and training on women's
situation and development.  In the light of the Platform for Action, INSTRAW
should review its work programme and develop a programme for implementing
those aspects of the Platform for Action that fall within its mandate.  It
should identify those types of research and research methodologies to be given
priority, strengthen national capacities to carry out women's studies and
gender research, including that on the status of the girl child, and develop
networks of research institutions that can be mobilized for that purpose.  It
should also identify those types of education and training that can be
effectively supported and promoted by the Institute.

United Nations Development Fund for Women

335. UNIFEM has the mandate to increase options and opportunities for women's
economic and social development in developing countries by providing technical
and financial assistance to incorporate the women's dimension into development
at all levels.  Therefore, UNIFEM should review and strengthen, as
appropriate, its work programme in the light of the Platform for Action,
focusing on women's political and economic empowerment.  Its advocacy role
should concentrate on fostering a multilateral policy dialogue on women's
empowerment.  Adequate resources for carrying out its functions should be made
available.

Specialized agencies and other organizations of the United Nations system

336. To strengthen their support for actions at the national level and to
enhance their contributions to coordinated follow-up by the United Nations,
each organization should set out the specific actions they will undertake,
including goals and targets to realign priorities and redirect resources to
meet the global priorities identified in the Platform for Action.  There
should be a clear delineation of responsibility and accountability.  These
proposals should in turn be reflected in the system-wide medium-term plan for
the advancement of women for the period 1996-2001.

337. Each organization should commit itself at the highest level and, in
pursuing its targets, should take steps to enhance and support the roles and
responsibilities of its focal points on women's issues.

338. In addition, specialized agencies with mandates to provide technical
assistance in developing countries, particularly in Africa and the least
developed countries, should cooperate more to ensure the continuing promotion
of the advancement of women.

339. The United Nations system should consider and provide appropriate
technical assistance and other forms of assistance to the countries with
economies in transition in order to facilitate solution of their specific
problems regarding the advancement of women.

340. Each organization should accord greater priority to the recruitment and
promotion of women at the Professional level to achieve gender balance,
particularly at decision-making levels.  The paramount consideration in the
employment of the staff and in the determination of the conditions of service
should be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency,
competence and integrity.  Due regard should be paid to the importance of
recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. 
Organizations should report regularly to their governing bodies on progress
towards this goal.

341. Coordination of United Nations operational activities for development at
the country level should be improved through the resident coordinator system
in accordance with relevant resolutions of the General Assembly, in particular
General Assembly resolution 47/199, to take full account of the Platform for
Action.


            2.  Other international institutions and organizations

342. In implementing the Platform for Action, international financial
institutions are encouraged to review and revise policies, procedures and
staffing to ensure that investments and programmes benefit women and thus
contribute to sustainable development.  They are also encouraged to increase
the number of women in high-level positions, increase staff training in gender
analysis and institute policies and guidelines to ensure full consideration of
the differential impact of lending programmes and other activities on women
and men.  In this regard, the Bretton Woods institutions, the United Nations,
as well as its funds and programmes and the specialized agencies, should
establish regular and substantive dialogue, including dialogue at the field
level, for more efficient and effective coordination of their assistance in
order to strengthen the effectiveness of their programmes for the benefit of
women and their families.

343. The General Assembly should give consideration to inviting the World
Trade Organization to consider how it might contribute to the implementation
of the Platform for Action, including activities in cooperation with the
United Nations system.

344. International non-governmental organizations have an important role to
play in implementing the Platform for Action.  Consideration should be given
to establishing a mechanism for collaborating with non-governmental
organizations to promote the implementation of the Platform at various levels.

                                  Chapter VI

                            FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENTS


345. Financial and human resources have generally been insufficient for the
advancement of women.  This has contributed to the slow progress to date in
implementing the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of
Women.  Full and effective implementation of the Platform for Action,
including the relevant commitments made at previous United Nations summits and
conferences, will require a political commitment to make available human and
financial resources for the empowerment of women.  This will require the
integration of a gender perspective in budgetary decisions on policies and
programmes, as well as the adequate financing of specific programmes for
securing equality between women and men.  To implement the Platform for
Action, funding will need to be identified and mobilized from all sources and
across all sectors.  The reformulation of policies and reallocation of
resources may be needed within and among programmes, but some policy changes
may not necessarily have financial implications.  Mobilization of additional
resources, both public and private, including resources from innovative
sources of funding, may also be necessary.


                              A.  National level

346. The primary responsibility for implementing the strategic objectives of
the Platform for Action rests with Governments.  To achieve these objectives,
Governments should make efforts to systematically review how women benefit
from public sector expenditures; adjust budgets to ensure equality of access
to public sector expenditures, both for enhancing productive capacity and for
meeting social needs; and achieve the gender-related commitments made in other
United Nations summits and conferences.  To develop successful national
implementation strategies for the Platform for Action, Governments should
allocate sufficient resources, including resources for undertaking
gender-impact analysis.  Governments should also encourage non-governmental
organizations and private-sector and other institutions to mobilize additional
resources.

347. Sufficient resources should be allocated to national machineries for the
advancement of women as well as to all institutions, as appropriate, that can
contribute to the implementation and monitoring of the Platform for Action.

348. Where national machineries for the advancement of women do not yet exist
or where they have not yet been established on a permanent basis, Governments
should strive to make available sufficient and continuing resources for such
machineries.

349. To facilitate the implementation of the Platform for Action, Governments
should reduce, as appropriate, excessive military expenditures and investments
for arms production and acquisition, consistent with national security
requirements.

350. Non-governmental organizations, the private sector and other actors of
civil society should be encouraged to consider allocating the resources
necessary for the implementation of the Platform for Action.  Governments
should create a supportive environment for the mobilization of resources by
non-governmental organizations, particularly women's organizations and
networks, feminist groups, the private sector and other actors of civil
society, to enable them to contribute towards this end.  The capacity of
non-governmental organizations in this regard should be strengthened and
enhanced.


                              B.  Regional level

351. Regional development banks, regional business associations and other
regional institutions should be invited to contribute to and help mobilize
resources in their lending and other activities for the implementation of the
Platform for Action.  They should also be encouraged to take account of the
Platform for Action in their policies and funding modalities.

352. The subregional and regional organizations and the United Nations
regional commissions should, where appropriate and within their existing
mandates, assist in the mobilization of funds for the implementation of the
Platform for Action.


                            C.  International level

353. Adequate financial resources should be committed at the international
level for the implementation of the Platform for Action in the developing
countries, particularly in Africa and the least developed countries. 
Strengthening national capacities in developing countries to implement the
Platform for Action will require striving for the fulfilment of the agreed
target of 0.7 per cent of the gross national product of developed countries
for overall official development assistance as soon as possible, as well as
increasing the share of funding for activities designed to implement the
Platform for Action.  Furthermore, countries involved in development
cooperation should conduct a critical analysis of their assistance programmes
so as to improve the quality and effectiveness of aid through the integration
of a gender approach.

354. International financial institutions, including the World Bank, the
International Monetary Fund, the International Fund for Agricultural
Development and the regional development banks, should be invited to examine
their grants and lending and to allocate loans and grants to programmes for
implementing the Platform for Action in developing countries, especially in
Africa and the least developed countries.

355. The United Nations system should provide technical cooperation and other
forms of assistance to the developing countries, in particular in Africa and
the least developed countries, in implementing the Platform for Action.

356. Implementation of the Platform for Action in the countries with
economies in transition will require continued international cooperation and
assistance.  The organizations and bodies of the United Nations system,
including the technical and sectoral agencies, should facilitate the efforts
of those countries in designing and implementing policies and programmes for
the advancement of women.  To this end, the International Monetary Fund and
the World Bank should be invited to assist those efforts.

357. The outcome of the World Summit for Social Development regarding debt
management and reduction as well as other United Nations world summits and
conferences should be implemented in order to facilitate the realization of
the objectives of the Platform for Action.



358. To facilitate implementation of the Platform for Action, interested
developed and developing country partners, agreeing on a mutual commitment to
allocate, on average, 20 per cent of official development assistance and
20 per cent of the national budget to basic social programmes should take into
account a gender perspective.

359. Development funds and programmes of the United Nations system should
undertake an immediate analysis of the extent to which their programmes and
projects are directed to implementing the Platform for Action and, for the
next programming cycle, should ensure the adequacy of resources targeted
towards eliminating disparities between women and men in their technical
assistance and funding activities.

360. Recognizing the roles of United Nations funds, programmes and
specialized agencies, in particular the special roles of UNIFEM and INSTRAW,
in the promotion of the empowerment of women, and therefore in the
implementation of the Platform for Action within their respective mandates,
inter alia, in research, training and information activities for the
advancement of women as well as technical and financial assistance to
incorporate a gender perspective in development efforts, the resources
provided by the international community need to be sufficient and should be
maintained at an adequate level.

361. To improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the United Nations system
in its efforts to promote the advancement of women and to enhance its capacity
to further the objectives of the Platform for Action, there is a need to
renew, reform and revitalize various parts of the United Nations system,
especially the Division for the Advancement of Women of the United Nations
Secretariat, as well as other units and subsidiary bodies that have a specific
mandate to promote the advancement of women.  In this regard, relevant
governing bodies within the United Nations system are encouraged to give
special consideration to the effective implementation of the Platform for
Action and to review their policies, programmes, budgets and activities in
order to achieve the most effective and efficient use of funds to this end. 
Allocation of additional resources from within the United Nations regular
budget in order to implement the Platform for Action will also be necessary. 


                                     Notes

     1/  Report of the World Conference to Review and Appraise the
Achievements of the United Nations Decade for Women:  Equality, Development
and Peace, Nairobi, 15-26 July 1985 (United Nations publication, Sales
No. E.85.IV.10), chap. I, sect. A.

     2/  Report of the World Conference on Human Rights, Vienna,
14-25 June 1993 (A/CONF.157/24 (Part I)), chap. III.

     3/  General Assembly resolution 34/180, annex.

     4/  General Assembly resolution 45/164.

     5/  General Assembly resolution 44/82.

     6/  General Assembly resolution 48/126.

     7/  A/47/308-E/1992/97, annex.

     8/  General Assembly resolution 48/104.

     9/  Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, Report of the World
Conference on Human Rights ..., chap. III, para. 5.

     10/ See The Results of the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade
Negotiations:  The Legal Texts (Geneva, GATT secretariat, 1994).

     11/ General Assembly resolution 44/25, annex.

     12/ Final Report of the World Conference on Education for All:  Meeting
Basic Learning Needs, Jomtien, Thailand, 5-9 March 1990, Inter-Agency
Commission (UNDP, UNESCO, UNICEF, World Bank) for the World Conference on
Education for All, New York, 1990, appendix 1.

     13/ General Assembly resolution 2200 A (XXI), annex.

     14/ Report of the International Conference on Population and
Development, Cairo, 5-13 September 1994 (United Nations publication, Sales
No. E.95.XIII.18), chap. I, resolution 1, annex.

     15/ Report of the World Summit for Social Development, Copenhagen,
6-12 March 1995 (A/CONF.166/9), chap. I, resolution 1, annexes I and II.

     16/ Unsafe abortion is defined as a procedure for terminating an
unwanted pregnancy either by persons lacking the necessary skills or in an
environment lacking the minimal medical standards or both (based on World
Health Organization, The Prevention and Management of Unsafe Abortion, Report
of a Technical Working Group, Geneva, April 1992 (WHO/MSM/92.5)).

     17/ Final Report of the International Conference on Nutrition, Rome,
5-11 December 1992 (Rome, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United
Nations, 1993), Part II.

     18/ Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development, Rio de Janeiro, 3-14 June 1992, vol. I, Resolutions Adopted by
the Conference (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.93.I.8 and
corrigenda), resolution 1, annex I.

     19/ Ibid., resolution 1, annex II.

     20/ General Assembly resolution 317 (IV), annex.

     21/ General Assembly resolution 217 A (III).

     22/ General Assembly resolution 39/46, annex.

     23/ Official Records of the General Assembly, Forty-seventh Session,
Supplement No. 38 (A/47/38), chap. I.

     24/ United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 75, No. 973, p. 287.

     25/ Report of the World Conference on Human Rights ..., chap. III,
sect. II, para. 38.

     26/ See The United Nations Disarmament Yearbook, vol. 5:  1980 (United
Nations publication, Sales No. E.81.IX.4), appendix VII.

     27/ General Assembly resolution 260 A (III), annex.

     28/ United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 189, No. 2545.

     29/ Ibid., vol. 606, No. 8791.

     30/ General Assembly resolution 48/96, annex.

     31/ General Assembly resolution 1386 (XIV).

     32/ See CEDAW/SP/1995/2.

     33/ General Assembly resolution 2106 A (XX), annex.

     34/ General Assembly resolution 41/128, annex.

     35/ United Nations Environment Programme, Convention on Biological
Diversity (Environmental Law and Institutions Programme Activity Centre),
June 1992.


                                 Resolution 2

               Expression of thanks to the people and Government
                      of the People's Republic of China*


     The Fourth World Conference on Women,

     Having met in Beijing from 4 to 15 September 1995 at the invitation of
the Government of the People's Republic of China,

     1.  Expresses its deep appreciation to Her Excellency Madame Chen Muhua,
Vice-Chairperson of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress
of the People's Republic of China, for her outstanding contribution, as
President of the Fourth World Conference on Women, to the successful outcome
of the Conference;

     2.  Expresses its profound gratitude to the Government of the People's
Republic of China for having made it possible for the Conference to be held in
Beijing and for the excellent facilities, staff and services so graciously
placed at its disposal;

     3.  Requests the Government of the People's Republic of China to convey
to the City of Beijing and to the people of the People's Republic of China the
gratitude of the Conference for the hospitality and warm welcome extended to
the participants.

     * Adopted at the 16th plenary meeting, on 15 September 1995; for the
discussion, see chapter VIII.


                                 Resolution 3

              Credentials of representatives to the Fourth World
                             Conference on Women*


     The Fourth World Conference on Women,

     Having considered the report of the Credentials Committee 1/ and the
recommendation contained therein,

     Approves the report of the Credentials Committee.

     *   Adopted at the 12th plenary meeting, on 12 September 1995; for the
discussion, see chapter VI.

     1/  A/CONF.177/14.


                                  Chapter II

                      ATTENDANCE AND ORGANIZATION OF WORK


                     A.  Date and place of the Conference

1.   The Fourth World Conference on Women was held at Beijing from 4 to
15 September 1995 in conformity with General Assembly resolutions 45/129 and
46/98.  During that period the Conference held 16 plenary meetings.


                       B.  Pre-Conference consultations

2.   Pre-Conference consultations open to all States invited to participate
in the Conference were held at Beijing on 2 and 3 September 1995 to consider a
number of procedural and organizational matters.  These and other informal
consultations were conducted under the chairmanship of His Excellency
Mr. Li Zhaoxing, Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of
China.  The report on the consultations (A/CONF.177/L.4) was submitted to the
Conference and the recommendations contained in it were accepted as the basis
for the organization of the Conference's work.


                                C.  Attendance

3.   The following States and regional economic integration organization were
represented at the Conference:

Afghanistan
Albania
Algeria
Andorra
Angola
Antigua and Barbuda
Argentina
Armenia
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahamas
Bahrain
Bangladesh
Barbados
Belarus
Belgium
Belize
Benin
Bhutan
Bolivia
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Botswana
Brazil
Brunei Darussalam
Bulgaria
Burkina Faso
Burundi
Cambodia
Cameroon
Canada
Cape Verde
Central African Republic
Chad
Chile
China
Colombia
Comoros
Congo
Cook Islands
Costa Rica
Co^te d'Ivoire
Croatia
Cuba
Cyprus
Czech Republic
Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Denmark
Djibouti
Dominica
Dominican Republic
Ecuador
Egypt
El Salvador
Equatorial Guinea
Eritrea
Estonia
Ethiopia
European Community
Fiji
Finland
France
Gabon
Gambia
Georgia
Germany
Ghana
Greece
Guatemala
Guinea
Guinea-Bissau
Guyana
Haiti
Holy See
Honduras
Hungary
Iceland
India
Indonesia
Iran (Islamic Republic of)
Iraq
Ireland
Israel
Italy
Jamaica
Japan
Jordan
Kazakstan
Kenya
Kiribati
Kuwait
Kyrgyzstan
Lao People's Democratic Republic
Latvia
Lebanon
Lesotho
Liberia
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
Liechtenstein
Lithuania
Luxembourg
Madagascar
Malawi
Malaysia
Maldives
Mali
Malta
Marshall Islands
Mauritania
Mauritius
Mexico
Micronesia (Federated States of)
Monaco
Mongolia
Morocco
Mozambique
Myanmar
Namibia
Nauru
Nepal
Netherlands
New Zealand
Nicaragua
Niger
Nigeria
Niue
Norway
Oman
Pakistan
Palau
Panama
Papua New Guinea
Paraguay
Peru
Philippines
Poland
Portugal
Qatar
Republic of Korea
Republic of Moldova
Romania
Russian Federation
Rwanda
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Lucia
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Samoa
San Marino
Sao Tome and Principe
Senegal
Seychelles
Sierra Leone
Singapore
Slovakia
Slovenia
Solomon Islands
South Africa
Spain
Sri Lanka
Sudan
Suriname
Swaziland
Sweden
Switzerland
Syrian Arab Republic
Tajikistan
Thailand
The former Yugoslav Republic of
  Macedonia
Togo
Tonga
Trinidad and Tobago
Tunisia
Turkey
Turkmenistan
Tuvalu
Uganda
Ukraine
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom of Great Britain and
  Northern Ireland

United Republic of Tanzania
United States of America
Uruguay
Uzbekistan
Vanuatu
Venezuela
Viet Nam
Yemen
Zaire
Zambia
Zimbabwe

4.   The observer for Palestine attended the Conference.

5.   The following associate members of the regional commissions were
represented by observers:

     American Samoa
     Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
     Guam
     Macau
     Netherlands Antilles
     Puerto Rico

6.   The secretariats of the following regional commissions were represented:

     Economic Commission for Africa
     Economic Commission for Europe
     Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean
     Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific
     Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia

7.   The following United Nations bodies and programmes were represented:

     United Nations Children's Fund
     United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
     United Nations Development Fund for Women
     United Nations Development Programme
     United Nations Environment Programme
     United Nations Population Fund
     United Nations University
     World Food Programme
     United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the
Near
       East
     United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (Habitat)
     United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Office of the
     International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of
Women
     United Nations Research Institute for Social Development
     International Trade Centre
     Joint Inspection Unit
     Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women


8.   The following specialized agencies and related organizations were
represented:

     International Labour Organization
     Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
     United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
     World Health Organization
     World Bank
     International Monetary Fund
     World Meteorological Organization
     International Maritime Organization
     World Intellectual Property Organization
     International Fund for Agricultural Development
     United Nations Industrial Development Organization
     International Atomic Energy Agency

9.   The following intergovernmental organizations were represented:

     African Development Bank
     African Training and Research Centre in Administration for Development
     Agency for Cultural and Technical Cooperation
     Asian Development Bank
     Caribbean Community
     Commission of the European Communities
     Commonwealth of Independent States
     Commonwealth Secretariat
     Council of Europe
     Eastern and Southern African Management Institute
     Inter-American Development Bank
     International Committee of the Red Cross
     International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
     International Organization for Migration
     Latin American Economic System
     Latin American Parliament
     League of Arab States
     Nordic Council
     Nordic Council of Ministers
     Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development
     Organization of African Unity
     Organization of American States
     Organization of the Islamic Conference
     Preparatory Commission for the Organisation for the Prohibition of
Chemical
       Weapons
     South Pacific Commission
     South Pacific Forum

10.  A large number of non-governmental organizations were accredited to the
Conference by the Commission on the Status of Women in decision 39/2 and the
Economic and Social Council in decision 1995/229.


          D.  Opening of the Conference and election of the President

11.  The Conference was declared open by the Special Representative of the
Secretary-General of the United Nations, who read out the address of the
Secretary-General.

12.  At the 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September, the Conference elected, by
acclamation, as President of the Conference, Her Excellency Madame Chen Muhua,
Vice-Chairperson of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress
of the People's Republic of China.

13.  The Secretary-General of the Fourth World Conference on Women,
Mrs. Gertrude Mongella, addressed the Conference.

14.  Opening statements were made by Her Excellency Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto,
Prime Minister of Pakistan; Her Excellency Mrs. Vigdis Finnbogadottir,
President of Iceland; Her Excellency Begum Khaleda Zia, Prime Minister of
Bangladesh; Her Excellency Dr. Speciosa Wandira Kazibwe, Vice-President and
Minister of Gender and Community Development of Uganda; and Her Excellency
Madame Nguyen Thi Binh, Vice-President of Viet Nam.


                E.  Messages from Heads of State or Government

15.  The Conference received messages wishing it success from His Excellency
Mr. Heydor Aliyev, President of Azerbaijan; His Excellency Mr. Meles Zenawi,
Prime Minister of Ethiopia; His Excellency Flight Lieutenant J. J. Rawlings,
President of Ghana; His Excellency Mr. Fidel V. Ramos, President of the
Philippines; His Excellency Mr. Boris Yeltsin, President of the Russian
Federation; His Excellency Mr. Abdou Diouf, President of Senegal; and Her
Excellency Professor Tansu Ciller, Prime Minister of Turkey.


                    F.  Adoption of the rules of procedure

16.  At the 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September, the Conference adopted the
provisional rules of procedure (A/CONF.177/2) as approved by the Commission on
the Status of Women at its thirty-ninth session, acting as the preparatory
body for the Conference, and by the General Assembly in its decision 49/482 of
21 April 1995.


                          G.  Adoption of the agenda

17.  At the 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September, the Conference adopted as
its agenda the provisional agenda (A/CONF.177/1) recommended by the Commission
on the Status of Women, acting as the preparatory body for the Conference, in
annex I of its resolution 39/1.  The agenda as adopted was as follows:

     1.  Opening of the Conference.

     2.  Election of the President.

     3.  Adoption of the rules of procedure.

     4.  Adoption of the agenda and other organizational matters.

     5.  Election of officers other than the President.

     6.  Organization of work, including the establishment of the Main
         Committee.

     7.  Credentials of representatives to the Conference:

         (a)   Appointment of the members of the Credentials Committee;

         (b)   Report of the Credentials Committee.

     8.  General exchange of views:

         (a)   Second review and appraisal of the implementation of the
               Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women
               to the year 2000;

         (b)   Main conclusions and recommendations of regional preparatory
               conferences;

         (c)   National priorities and commitments.

      9. Platform for Action.

     10. Adoption of the Declaration and the Platform for Action of the
         Fourth World Conference on Women.

     11. Adoption of the report of the Conference.


               H.  Election of officers other than the President

18.  At the 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September, the Conference endorsed the
recommendations concerning the composition of the General Committee and the
distribution of posts as set out in paragraph 4 of document A/CONF.177/3.

19.  At the same meeting, the Conference elected Vice-Presidents from the
following regional groups:

     African States (7 Vice-Presidents):  Botswana, Congo, Kenya, Morocco,
     Nigeria, Senegal and Sudan;

     Asian States (6 Vice-Presidents):  Bangladesh, Japan, Jordan, Malaysia,
     Pakistan and the Syrian Arab Republic;

     Eastern European States (3 Vice-Presidents):  Azerbaijan, Romania and
     the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia;

     Latin American and Caribbean States (5 Vice-Presidents):  Bahamas,
     Brazil, Colombia, Cuba and Panama;

     Western European and other States (6 Vice-Presidents):  Australia,
     Greece, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain and Sweden.

20.  At the same meeting, the Conference elected an ex officio Vice-President
from the host country, His Excellency Mr. Li Zhaoxing, Vice-Minister for
Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China.

21.  At the same meeting, the Conference elected Mrs. Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah
(Namibia) Rapporteur-General of the Conference.

22.  Also at the same meeting, the Conference elected
Ms. Patricia B. Licuanan (Philippines) Chairperson of the Main Committee.


            I.  Organization of work, including the establishment of
                the Main Committee of the Conference

23.  At the 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September, the Conference, in
accordance with the recommendations of the pre-Conference consultations
contained in paragraphs 15 to 18 of document A/CONF.177/L.4, approved its
organization of work.


          J.  Appointment of the members of the Credentials Committee

24.  At the 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September, in conformity with rule 4 of
the rules of procedure of the Conference and the recommendation of the
pre-Conference consultations contained in paragraph 19 of document
A/CONF.177/L.4, the Conference established a Credentials Committee composed of
China, Fiji, Honduras, Namibia, Portugal, the Russian Federation, Suriname,
Togo and the United States of America, on the understanding that, if one of
those States did not participate in the Conference, it would be replaced by
another State from the same regional group.




                                  Chapter III

                           GENERAL EXCHANGE OF VIEWS


1.   The Conference held a general exchange of views on (a) the second review
and appraisal of the implementation of the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies
for the Advancement of Women to the Year 2000; (b) the main conclusions and
recommendations of regional preparatory conferences; and (c) national
priorities and commitments (item 8) at the 2nd to 15th plenary meetings, from
5 to 15 September 1995.  Representatives of States, observers, specialized
agencies, United Nations bodies, programmes and offices, intergovernmental
organizations and non-governmental organizations and observers for associate
members of the regional commissions addressed the Conference.  All speakers
expressed their appreciation of the efforts made by the host Government and
the secretariat in preparing for the Conference.

2.   At the 2nd plenary meeting, on 5 September, the Conference heard
statements by the First Ladies of Panama and Brazil and the representatives of
the Philippines, Spain, Turkey, Indonesia, Japan, Italy, New Zealand, Belgium,
Mexico and Sri Lanka.

3.   At the 3rd plenary meeting, on 5 September, the Conference heard
statements by the First Ladies of the Republic of Korea, Ecuador, Ghana and
Benin, Her Royal Highness Princess Basma Bint Talal of Jordan and the
representatives of Ukraine, Namibia, China, Iceland, India, Thailand, the
United Republic of Tanzania, Senegal, Chile, Portugal, the United Kingdom of
Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Antigua and Barbuda, Tunisia, the Holy See
and Nepal.

4.   At the same meeting, statements were made by the Directors-General of
the World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the
United Nations.  Statements were also made by the Deputy United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees, the Executive Directors of the United Nations
Children's Fund and the United Nations Population Fund and the United Nations
High Commissioner for Human Rights.  Her Majesty Queen Fabiola of Belgium, the
representative of the International Steering Committee on the Economic
Advancement of Rural Women, made a statement.  Statements were also made by
the representatives of the following non-governmental organizations:  NGO
Forum in Beijing, National Organization of Arab/American Women and Committee
for Asian Women.

5.   At the 4th plenary meeting, on 6 September, statements were made by the
First Lady of Egypt, His Royal Highness Prince Sobandla Dlamini of Swaziland
and the representatives of Ireland, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea,
Germany, Zimbabwe, Malta, Morocco, Gabon, Peru and Algeria.

6.   At the same meeting, the Administrator of the United Nations Development
Programme made a statement.  A statement was also made by the representative
of the Commission of the European Communities.

7.   At the 5th plenary meeting, on 6 September, the Conference heard
statements by the First Ladies of El Salvador, Suriname, Djibouti and
Equatorial Guinea, Her Royal Highness Princess Norodom Marie Ranariddh of
Cambodia and the representatives of the United States of America, Australia,
Denmark, South Africa, Guinea, Lithuania, Canada, Zambia, Fiji, Finland,
Malaysia, Luxembourg, Sweden, Poland, Mongolia, Guyana, Singapore, Pakistan,
Mozambique and Togo.

8.   At the same meeting, a statement was made by the Deputy Director-General
of the International Labour Organization.  The Executive Director of the World
Food Programme, an Inspector of the Joint Inspection Unit, the Executive
Director of the United Nations Environment Programme and the Executive
Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific made
statements.  The representatives of the International Organization for
Migration and the Commonwealth Secretariat, intergovernmental organizations,
made statements.  Statements were also made by the following non-governmental
organizations:  International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, Family Life
Counselling and All India Women's Conference.

9.   At the 6th plenary meeting, on 7 September, the Conference heard a
statement by the First Lady of Lebanon and the representatives of Austria,
Hungary, Argentina, Slovakia, Latvia, the United Arab Emirates, Norway, France
and Saint Lucia.

10.  At the same meeting, the Director-General of the United Nations
Industrial Development Organization made a statement.  A statement was also
made by the Chairperson of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination
against Women.

11.  At the 7th plenary meeting, on 7 September, the Conference heard
statements by Her Majesty Queen Halaevalu Mata'aho of Tonga and the
representatives of Greece, Nicaragua, Co^te d'Ivoire, Cyprus, Switzerland,
Bulgaria, Venezuela, Cameroon, Trinidad and Tobago, Rwanda, Paraguay, the
Central African Republic, Vanuatu, the Czech Republic, Niger, Bahrain and
Georgia.  The observer for Macau made a statement.  The observer for Palestine
also made a statement.

12.  At the same meeting, the Rector of the United Nations University, the
Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Europe and the Assistant
Secretary-General of the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements and
Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements
(Habitat II) made statements.  Statements were also made by the
representatives of the League of Arab States, the Council of Europe and the
Agency for Cultural and Technical Cooperation.  Statements were also made by
the representatives of the following non-governmental organizations: 
International Cooperative Alliance, International Coalition on Women and
Credit, Accio'n Familiar, Women's International Democratic Federation,
International Right to Life Federation, Network for Women in Development: 
Europe, and World Muslim Congress.

13.  At the 8th meeting, on 8 September, statements were made by the First
Lady of Burundi and the representatives of Kenya, Liechtenstein, Cuba,
Estonia, Croatia, Jamaica, the Bahamas, Belize, Romania and Viet Nam.

14.  At the same meeting, statements were made by the Director-General of the
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.  The
Director of the Division of Economic Cooperation among Developing Countries
and Special Programmes of the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development also made a statement.

15.  At the 9th plenary meeting, on 8 September, the Conference heard
statements by the First Ladies of Nigeria and Bolivia, Her Royal Highness
Princess Sonam Chodron Wangchuck of Bhutan and the representatives of
Honduras, Angola, Oman, Mauritania, the Russian Federation, the Netherlands,
Israel, Dominica, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and
Guinea-Bissau.  The observer for the Netherlands Antilles made a statement.

16.  At the same meeting, a statement was made by the representative of the
World Meteorological Organization.  Statements were also made by the Executive
Director of the International Trade Centre, the Executive Coordinator of the
United Nations Volunteers, the Under-Secretary-General for Development Support
and Management Services of the United Nations Secretariat, the Executive
Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa and the Director of the United
Nations Development Fund for Women.  The representatives of the following
intergovernmental organizations made statements:  Organization of the Islamic
Conference and Asian Development Bank.  Statements were also made by the
representatives of the following non-governmental organizations: 
International Planned Parenthood Federation, Inter-Parliamentary Union, Muslim
World League, National Council of Negro Women, Disabled Peoples International
and Centre for International Cooperation.

17.  At the 10th plenary meeting, on 11 September, the Conference heard
statements by the representatives of Colombia, Maldives, Liberia, Barbados,
the Republic of Moldova, Mauritius, Papua New Guinea, Burkina Faso and
Uruguay.

18.  At the same meeting, statements were made by the representative of the
International Monetary Fund and the representative of the World Health
Organization, on behalf of the Joint and Co-sponsored United Nations Programme
on Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immunodeficiency Virus.  The Acting
Director of the International Research and Training Institute for the
Advancement of Women made a statement.  A statement was also made by the
representative of the Inter-American Development Bank, an intergovernmental
organization.

19.  At the 11th plenary meeting, on 11 September, statements were made by
the representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Malawi, the Congo, the Islamic
Republic of Iran, Belarus, Tuvalu, the Sudan, Guatemala, Iraq, the Lao
People's Democratic Republic, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Saint
Vincent and the Grenadines, Armenia, San Marino, Myanmar, the Comoros, Saint
Kitts and Nevis, Qatar and Cape Verde.

20.  At the same meeting, a statement was made by the representative of the
International Atomic Energy Agency.  Statements were also made by the
representatives of the following intergovernmental organizations: 
Organization of American States, International Committee of the Red Cross,
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Organization
of African Unity, African Development Bank and Nordic Council.  The
representative of the Global Commission on Women's Health also made a
statement.  Statements were made by the representatives of the following
non-governmental organizations:  International Federation of Agricultural
Producers, Commission on Global Governance, Women's International League for
Peace and Freedom, Grassroots Organizations Operating Together in Sisterhood
and Women and Fisheries Network.

21.  At the 12th plenary meeting, on 12 September, the Conference heard
statements by the First Ladies of the Gambia and Kazakstan, the
representatives of Sao Tome and Principe, Bangladesh, Turkmenistan, Haiti,
Eritrea, Sierra Leone, Samoa, Lesotho and Madagascar and the observer for
Guam.

22.  At the same meeting, a statement was made by the representative of the
South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.

23.  At the 13th plenary meeting, on 12 September, statements were made by
the representatives of Botswana, the Syrian Arab Republic, the Dominican
Republic, Mali, Azerbaijan, the Marshall Islands, Zaire, the Federated States
of Micronesia, Yemen, Ethiopia, Chad, Costa Rica, Brunei Darussalam, Slovenia,
Uzbekistan, Albania, Nauru, Solomon Islands, Tajikistan, Cook Islands,
Kiribati and Kuwait.

24.  At the same meeting, a statement was made by the representative of the
International Maritime Organization.  A statement was also made by the
representative of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine
Refugees in the Near East.  The President of the Comite' ministe'riel de
coordination "femmes et de'veloppement" made a statement.  The representative
of the Latin American Parliament, an intergovernmental organization, also made
a statement.  Statements were made by the representatives of the following
non-governmental organizations:  Agence de recherches d'information et
formation pour les femmes, Women's Environment and Development Organization,
Somali Women's Trust, Association pour le progre`s et la de'fense des droits
des femmes maliennes and Forum of African Women Educationalists.

25.  At the 14th plenary meeting, on 13 September, the Conference heard a
statement by the representative of Palau.

26.  At the same meeting, the representative of the Office of Human Resources
Management of the United Nations Secretariat made a statement.  Statements
were also made by the representatives of the following non-governmental
organizations:  Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era,
Interaction:  American Council for Voluntary International Action, Flora
Tristan, Coordinating Board of Jewish Organizations, African Caucus of Femnet,
Housewives in Dialogue, Global Network Women and Politics, International Gay
and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, Older Women's Network Australia, World
Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, Network of African Rural Women's
Associations, Polish Federation for Women and Family Planning, International
Human Rights Law Group, Centre for Women's Global Leadership, Fe'de'ration
europe'enne des femmes actives au foyer, Anglican Communion, Arab Organization
for Human Rights, Education International, World Federation of United Nations
Associations, World Federation of Trade Unions, Choisir and International
Federation of University Women.

27.  At the 15th plenary meeting, on 15 September, the President of Peru made
a statement.

28.  At the same meeting, the Conference heard a statement by the President
of the World Bank.  A statement was also made by the representative of the
Coalition of Youth Non-Governmental Organizations accredited to the Fourth
World Conference on Women.


                                  Chapter IV

                         REPORT OF THE MAIN COMMITTEE

                           A.  Organization of work

1.   At its 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September 1995, the Conference approved
the organization of its work, as set out in document A/CONF.177/3, and decided
to allocate agenda item 9 (Platform for Action) to the Main Committee, which
was to submit its recommendations to the Conference.

2.   The Main Committee held six meetings, from 5 to 14 September 1995.  It
also held a number of informal meetings.

3.   The Main Committee had before it the following documents:

     (a) Note by the Secretariat on proposals for consideration in the
preparation of a draft declaration and on the draft platform for action
(A/CONF.177/L.1);

     (b) Note by the Secretariat transmitting the report of the informal
contact group on gender (A/CONF.177/L.2);

     (c) Note by the Secretary-General containing amendments to the text of
the draft platform for action agreed upon at the informal consultations
convened by the Chairperson of the Commission on the Status of Women from 31
July to 4 August 1995 (A/CONF.177/L.3).

4.   The Chairperson of the Main Committee was Patricia B. Licuanan
(Philippines), who was elected by acclamation at the 1st plenary meeting of
the Conference, on 4 September.

5.   The Main Committee, at its 1st meeting, on 5 September, elected the
following officers by acclamation:

     Vice-Chairpersons:  Zelmira Regazolli (Argentina)

                         Irene Freudenschuss-Reichl (Austria)

                         Natalia Drozd (Belarus)

     Rapporteur:  Selma Ashipala (Namibia)

6.   Also at its 1st meeting, the Main Committee established two working
groups and designated Amma Yeboaa (Ghana) Chairperson of Working Group I and
Irene Freudenschuss-Reichl (Austria) Chairperson of Working Group II.

7.   At the 2nd meeting, on 11 September, statements were made by the
representatives of Mauritius, Spain, France, Benin, Mauritania, Tunisia,
Paraguay, Latvia, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Holy See, Iraq, Guatemala,
Canada and Chile.  The Chairperson of the Committee and the Secretary of the
Conference also made statements.

8.   At the 3rd meeting, on 12 September, statements were made by the
representatives of Egypt, Peru, the Syrian Arab Republic, Bahrain, Malta,
Paraguay, Kuwait, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador and Mauritania.

              B.  Consideration of the draft platform for action

9.   At the 3rd to 6th meetings, on 12 and 14 September, the Main Committee
considered amendments and corrections to the draft platform for action
(A/CONF.177/L.1 and A/CONF.177/L.3) that had been agreed upon by Working
Groups I and II and during informal consultations.

Strategic objectives and actions:  women and armed conflict*

10.  At the 3rd meeting, on 12 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV (Strategic objectives and actions), section E
(Women and armed conflict) of the draft platform for action.  Statements were
made by the representatives of Argentina, Norway, Benin, Canada, Nigeria, the
Philippines (on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are
members of the Group of 77), Spain, Guatemala, Cameroon, Indonesia, the Holy
See, Jamaica, Bolivia, Ecuador, the Sudan, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the
United States of America, Malta, Algeria, Australia, Peru, the Syrian Arab
Republic, Namibia, Chile, Kuwait, Belize, Equatorial Guinea and Liberia.  The
Vice-Chairperson of the Committee, Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a
statement.

11.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section E, and recommended the text to the
Conference for adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.9 and
Corr.1).  Statements were made by the representatives of Malta, Cyprus, the
Holy See, Spain (on behalf of the European Community), Fiji, India, the Syrian
Arab Republic and Cuba.  The Vice-Chairperson of the Committee,
Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a statement.

Strategic objectives and actions:  women in power and decision-making*

12.  At the 3rd meeting, on 12 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section G (Women in power and decision-making) of
the draft platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of
Benin, Algeria, Nigeria, Spain (on behalf of the European Community), Peru,
Mauritania and Argentina.  The Vice-Chairperson of the Committee,
Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a statement.

13.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section G, and recommended the text to the
Conference for adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.11
and Corr.1).  The representative of Japan made a statement.

Strategic objectives and actions:  women and poverty*

14.  At the 3rd meeting, on 12 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section A (Women and poverty) of the draft
platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of
Argentina, Pakistan, Benin, the United States of America, Algeria and the
Philippines.  The Vice-Chairperson of the Committee, Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl,
also made a statement.

15.  At the 4th and 5th meetings, on 14 September, the Main Committee
approved corrections to chapter IV, section A.

16.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved oral
revisions to chapter IV, section A, and recommended the text to the Conference
for adoption as amended, corrected and orally revised (see
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.5 and Corr.1 and A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.21).

Strategic objectives and actions:  women and the media*

17.  At the 3rd meeting, on 12 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section J (Women and the media) of the draft
platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of Paraguay,
Argentina, Peru, Mauritius and the United States of America.  The Chairperson
of Working Group I, Ms. Yeboaa, also made a statement.

18.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section J, and recommended the text to the
Conference for adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.14
and Corr.1).

Institutional arrangements

19.  At the 3rd meeting, on 12 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter V (Institutional arrangements) of the draft platform
for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of Spain (on behalf
of the European Community), Kuwait and the United States of America.

20.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter V.  Statements were made by the representatives of the
United States of America and Spain.

21.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved oral
revisions to chapter V and recommended the text to the Conference for adoption
as amended, corrected and orally revised (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.17 and Corr.1
and A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.21).  Statements were made by the representatives of
the Holy See, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Philippines (on behalf of the
States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Group of 77 and
China), Spain (on behalf of the European Community), Egypt, Kuwait, Canada,
Namibia, Nigeria, Malta, Bahrain, Norway, Yemen, Switzerland, Oman, Australia,
Suriname, Botswana, Cuba, South Africa, Benin, Belize, Estonia, Morocco,
Bolivia, Israel, Jordan, the Syrian Arab Republic, Jamaica, the Libyan Arab
Jamahiriya, Mauritania, Chile, Senegal and the Sudan.  The Secretary-General
of the Conference and the Chairperson of the Committee also made statements.

Financial arrangements

22.  At the 3rd meeting, on 12 September, the Main Committee considered an
amended and corrected text for chapter VI (Financial arrangements) of the
draft platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of the
United States of America, Spain (on behalf of the European Community), Nigeria
and Tunisia.

23.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved the
text of chapter VI and recommended it to the Conference for adoption as
amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.18).

_________________

     * At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
amendments and corrections to the section titles and strategic objectives
contained in chapter IV of the draft platform for action (see para. 48 below).


Mission statement

24.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee considered an
amended text for chapter I (Mission statement) of the draft platform for
action.  Statements were made by the representatives of the Philippines (on
behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the
Group of 77), Latvia (on behalf of the Eastern European States), China,
Colombia, Benin, Spain (on behalf of the European Community), the United
States of America, Algeria, Cuba, Ecuador, Bolivia and India.  The Chairperson
of the Committee also made a statement.

25.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee, after accepting
an oral revision to chapter I, approved the text and recommended it to the
Conference for adoption as amended and orally revised (see
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.1).  Statements were made by the representatives of the
Philippines (on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are
members of the Group of 77 and China), the Sudan, the United States of
America, Norway, Spain (on behalf of the European Community) and Japan.

Global framework

26.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text and corrections to chapter II (Global framework) of the draft
platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of
Guatemala, the Holy See, Bulgaria, the Russian Federation, India, Pakistan,
the United States of America, Canada, the Sudan, Malta, Spain (on behalf of
the European Community), Malaysia, Mauritania and Israel.  The Chairperson of
Working Group I, Ms. Yeboaa, also made a statement.

27.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved oral
revisions to chapter II and recommended the text to the Conference for
adoption as amended, corrected and orally revised (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.2
and Corr.1).

Critical areas of concern*

28.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter III (Critical areas of concern) of the draft platform
for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of Pakistan, the
United States of America, Bulgaria and the Russian Federation.

29.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved oral
revisions to chapter III and recommended the text to the Conference for
adoption as amended and orally revised (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.3 and
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.21).  Statements were made by the representatives of the
Holy See, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Philippines (on behalf of the
States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Group of 77 and
China), Spain (on behalf of the European Community), Egypt, Kuwait, Canada,
Namibia, Nigeria, Malta, Bahrain, Norway, Yemen, Switzerland, Oman, Australia,
Suriname, Botswana, Cuba, South Africa, Benin, Belize, Estonia, Morocco,
Bolivia, Israel, Jordan, the Syrian Arab Republic, Jamaica, the Libyan Arab
Jamahiriya, Mauritania, Chile, Senegal and the Sudan.  The Secretary-General
of the Conference and the Chairperson of the Committee also made statements.

______________________

     *   At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
amendments and corrections to the critical areas of concern listed in
chapter III of the draft platform for action (see para. 48 below).

Strategic objectives and actions:  education and training of women*

30.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text and corrections to chapter IV, section B (Education and training
of women) of the draft platform for action.  Statements were made by the
representatives of the Sudan, Benin, China, the Russian Federation, Spain (on
behalf of the European Community), Yemen and the Syrian Arab Republic.  The
Vice-Chairperson of the Committee, Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a
statement.

31.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved further
corrections to chapter IV, section B, and recommended the text to the
Conference for adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.6 and
Corr.1).  Statements were made by the representatives of Spain, the Libyan
Arab Jamahiriya, Benin and the United States of America.  The Vice-Chairperson
of the Committee, Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a statement.

Strategic objectives and actions:  women and health*

32.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section C (Women and health) of the draft
platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of Barbados,
Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, Malta, Mauritania, the Libyan Arab
Jamahiriya, the Sudan, Honduras, the Holy See, Morocco, Yemen, Iraq, the
United Arab Emirates, Nigeria, Kuwait, Benin, the Syrian Arab Republic,
Jordan, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Tunisia, Oman, Bahrain, Japan, Senegal,
Bangladesh, Indonesia and Belize.  The Secretary-General of the Conference and
the Vice-Chairperson of the Committee, Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made
statements.

33.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section C, and recommended the text to the
Conference for adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.7 and
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.21).

Strategic objectives and actions:  violence against women*

34.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section D (Violence against women) of the draft
platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of Jamaica,
Haiti and the Russian Federation.

35.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section D, and recommended the text to the
Conference for adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.8 and
Corr.1).  Statements were made by the representatives of Spain (on behalf of
the European Community), the Russian Federation, the Philippines (on behalf of
the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Group of 77
and China), Argentina and Azerbaijan.  The Vice-Chairperson of the Committee,
Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a statement.

Strategic objectives and actions:  human rights of women*

36.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section I (Human rights of women) of the draft
platform for action.  Statements were made by the representative of Spain and
the Vice-Chairperson of the Committee, Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl.

37.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section I.

38.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved oral
revisions to chapter IV, section I, and recommended the text to the Conference
for adoption as amended, corrected and orally revised (see
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.13 and Corr.1 and A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.21).  Statements were
made by the representatives of the Sudan and Canada.

Strategic objectives and actions:  women and the economy*

39.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section F (Women and the economy) of the draft
platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of Yemen,
Spain, the United States of America, Benin and Vanuatu.  The Vice-Chairperson
of the Committee, Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a statement.

40.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved oral
revisions to chapter IV, section F, and recommended the text to the Conference
for adoption as amended and orally revised (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.10 and
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.21).

Strategic objectives and actions:  women and the environment*

41.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section K (Women and the environment) of the
draft platform for action.  Statements were made by the representatives of
Belize, the Syrian Arab Republic, the United States of America, the United
Arab Emirates and Oman.

42.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section K, and recommended the text to the
Conference for adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.15
and Corr.1).  Statements were made by the representatives of India, Australia,
Spain (on behalf of the European Community), the Philippines (on behalf of the
States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Group of 77 and
China), the United States of America and the Russian Federation.

43.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the representative of the United
States of America and the Vice-Chairperson of the Committee,
Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, made statements.

Strategic objectives and actions:  the girl child*

44.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section L (The girl child) of the draft platform
for action and recommended the text to the Conference for adoption as amended
(see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.16).  Statements were made by the representatives of
the United States of America, Spain (on behalf of the European Community), the
Sudan, the Holy See, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the United Arab Emirates,
Mauritania, the Syrian Arab Republic, Oman, Iraq, Kuwait, Zimbabwe, Algeria,
Egypt, Tunisia, Bangladesh, Morocco and Yemen.  The Chairperson of Working
Group I, Ms. Yeboaa, also made a statement.

Strategic objectives and actions:  institutional mechanisms for the
advancement of women*

45.  At the 4th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended text for chapter IV, section H (Institutional mechanisms for the
advancement of women) of the draft platform for action.  Statements were made
by the representatives of Spain (on behalf of the European Community), the
United States of America and Nepal.  The Vice-Chairperson of the Committee,
Ms. Freudenschuss-Reichl, also made a statement.

46.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
corrections to chapter IV, section H.

47.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved oral
revisions to chapter IV, section H, and recommended the text to the Conference
for adoption as amended, corrected and orally revised (see
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.12 and Corr.1 and A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.21).  Statements were
made by the representatives of the Holy See, the Philippines (on behalf of the
States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Group of 77 and
China) and Spain (on behalf of the European Community).

Critical areas of concern listed in chapter III and section titles and
strategic objectives in chapter IV

48.  At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
amendments and corrections to the critical areas of concern listed in chapter
III of the draft platform for action and the section titles and strategic
objectives contained in chapter IV and recommended them to the Conference for
adoption as amended and corrected (see A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.19).  Statements
were made by the representatives of the United States of America, Jamaica,
Spain, the Philippines, the Holy See, the Russian Federation, the Syrian Arab
Republic and Malta.

Strategic objectives and actions:  introduction

49.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved an
amended and orally revised text for the introductory paragraphs of chapter IV
(Strategic objectives and actions) of the draft platform for action and
recommended the text to the Conference for adoption (see
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.4).  Statements were made by the representatives of Canada,
Benin, Egypt, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Spain, Ecuador, the Libyan Arab
Jamahiriya, New Zealand, Israel, Switzerland, the Syrian Arab Republic,
Jordan, Uganda, Belize, South Africa, Kuwait, Senegal, Slovenia, Ghana,
Australia, Bangladesh, Cuba, Co^te d'Ivoire, Algeria, the Sudan, the United
States of America, Nigeria, Guatemala, Barbados, Chile, Latvia, the United
Arab Emirates, Jamaica, Brazil, Colombia, Yemen, Bolivia, Norway, Venezuela
and the Cook Islands.

______________________

     *   At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
amendments and corrections to the section titles and strategic objectives
contained in chapter IV of the draft platform for action (see para. 48 below).


                  C.  Consideration of the draft declaration

50.  At the 6th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved the
text of the draft declaration as orally revised on the basis of informal
consultations and recommended it to the Conference for adoption (see
A/CONF.177/L.5/Add.20).  Statements were made by the representatives of Yemen,
the Philippines (on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that
are members of the Group of 77), Paraguay, Tunisia, Colombia and China.

                                    *  *  *

51.  After the Main Committee approved the draft declaration and draft
platform for action, statements were made by the representatives of Paraguay,
Uruguay, the United States of America, Morocco, Jordan, Lithuania (also on
behalf of Estonia and Latvia), Mauritania, Slovenia, the Sudan, Iraq, the
Syrian Arab Republic, Oman, Tunisia, Yemen, Ghana, India, Benin, the
Philippines (on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are
members of the Group of 77 and China) and Spain (on behalf of the European
Community).  The Chairperson of the Committee made a concluding statement.


     * At the 5th meeting, on 14 September, the Main Committee approved
amendments and corrections to the section titles and strategic objectives
contained in chapter IV of the draft platform for action (see para. 48 below).

                                   Chapter V

          ADOPTION OF THE BEIJING DECLARATION AND PLATFORM FOR ACTION


1.   At the 16th plenary meeting, on 15 September 1995, the Conference
considered agenda item 10 (Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action of the
Fourth World Conference on Women).  The Chairperson of the Main Committee of
the Conference, Patricia B. Licuanan (Philippines), made a statement.

2.   At the same meeting, the representative of the Philippines, on behalf of
the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Group of 77,
introduced a draft resolution (A/CONF.177/L.9) whereby the Conference would
adopt the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and recommend them to
the General Assembly for endorsement at its fiftieth session.  The Conference
then adopted the draft resolution (for the text, see chap. I, resolution 1).

3.   After the draft resolution was adopted, representatives of the following
States made general and interpretative statements or expressed reservations on
the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action:  Peru, Kuwait, Egypt,
Philippines, Holy See, Malaysia, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Libyan Arab
Jamahiriya, Ecuador, Indonesia, Mauritania, Oman, Malta, Argentina, Brunei
Darussalam, France, Yemen, Sudan, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, United Arab
Emirates, Venezuela, Bahrain, Lebanon, Tunisia, Mali, Benin, Guatemala, India,
Algeria, Iraq, Vanuatu, Ethiopia, Morocco, Djibouti, Qatar, Nicaragua, Togo,
Liberia, Syrian Arab Republic, Pakistan, Nigeria, Comoros, Bolivia, Colombia,
Bangladesh, Honduras, Jordan, Ghana, Central African Republic, Cambodia,
Maldives, South Africa, United Republic of Tanzania, Brazil, Panama, El
Salvador, Madagascar, Chad, Cameroon, Niger, Gabon, United States of America
and Canada.  The observer for Palestine also made a statement.


           Reservations and interpretative statements on the Beijing
                      Declaration and Platform for Action

4.   The representatives of a number of countries made statements which they
requested the secretariat of the Conference to place on record.  Those
statements are set out below.

5.   The representative of Argentina submitted the following written
statement:

         The concept of family as used in the Conference documents is
     understood to mean the union of a man and a woman, who produce, nourish
     and educate their children.  No definition or recommendation contained
     in these documents weakens the parents' primary responsibility for
     bringing up their children, including providing education on sexual
     matters, a responsibility which should be respected by States pursuant
     to the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

         No reference in these documents to the right to control matters
     related to sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, may be
     interpreted as restricting the right to life or abrogating the
     condemnation of abortion as a method of birth control or an instrument
     of population policy (in accordance with article 75, paragraph 23, of
     the Constitution of Argentina, article 16 of the Convention on the
     Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and paragraph
     42 of the Vienna Programme of Action, adopted by the World Conference on
     Human Rights).  No proposal contained in the documents may be
     interpreted to justify programmes of female or male sterilization as an
     adjustment variable in eradicating poverty.

         The Argentine delegation participated in the consensus on
     paragraph 106 (k) of the Platform for Action, which recommends that
     Governments should consider reviewing laws containing punitive measures
     against women who have undergone abortions.  This position was taken in
     view of the legal tradition of Argentina, the practice of our courts and
     the attenuating circumstances that have generally been considered; this
     does not constitute, however, a proposal to decriminalize abortion or
     exempt from criminal responsibility those who may be accomplices or
     participants in this offence.

         The references to the Programme of Action of the International
     Conference on Population and Development contained in the documents of
     the Fourth World Conference on Women should be understood in the context
     of the reservations formulated by the Government of the Argentine
     Republic and included in the report of that Conference (A/CONF.171/13
     and Add.1).

         With regard to all that is relevant to the documents of the Fourth
     World Conference on Women, the Argentine delegation maintains the same
     reservations which it submitted concerning the Regional Programme of
     Action for the Women of Latin America and the Caribbean, adopted in
     Santiago, Chile, in June 1995.

6.   The representative of Costa Rica submitted the following written
statement:

         Costa Rica is a State in which the strict rule of law prevails; it
     is respectful of the law, being fully devoted to respect for human
     rights and the promotion of tolerance; and it participates in the world-
     wide consensus that inequalities exist which place women at a
     disadvantage, and that this situation should be rectified.

         Accordingly, Costa Rica has adopted, signed and ratified all the
     instruments which promote equality of rights and opportunities between
     women and men, and it has been adapting its national legislation to
     these instruments, especially in relation to the Convention on the
     Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.

         Nevertheless, we are aware that new challenges exist in our country,
     that much remains to be resolved with regard to improving the situation
     of women and that the advancement of women is crucial to the achievement
     of sustainable human development.

         Aware that the series of measures contained in the Platform for
     Action of the Fourth World Conference on Women is consistent with the
     policies promoted in our country for the advancement of women, we wish
     to confirm to the international community that we support the Platform,
     that this support is respectful of the socio-cultural diversity of
     nations and that the Platform will be incorporated at the national level
     into the current legal system, in strict concordance with our best
     traditions, beliefs and values.

         From this point of view, Costa Rica wishes to state that, in matters
     relating to sexuality, it understands any references in the Platform to
     women's rights to mean, as in the case of men, the capacity of women or
     men to achieve and maintain their sexual and reproductive health in a
     framework of relations of equality and mutual respect.

         In relation to the strategic objective of the Platform which
     proposes the reduction in military expenditure and limiting the
     available arms, which is based on chapter IV, paragraph 70, subparagraph
     12, of the Programme of Action of the World Summit for Social
     Development on the topic of social integration, Costa Rica reiterates
     its devotion to peace and the statement it made at that Conference
     concerning the need for conflicts and differences among nations and
     peoples and among social groups to be resolved through negotiation,
     dialogue and the quest for consensus, and that the resources being spent
     for weapons could be much better spent on the social development of
     peoples.

         Lastly, we wish to confirm and reiterate to the international
     community that it is a priority task of both women and men to seek to
     eliminate all forms of discrimination in accordance with the principle
     of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.

7.   The representative of the Dominican Republic submitted the following
written statement:

         Pursuant to the rules of procedure of the Fourth World Conference on
     Women, the Dominican Republic supports the general agreement reached on
     the Platform for Action and reaffirms its commitment to comply with that
     agreement.

         The Dominican Republic, as a signatory to the American Convention on
     Human Rights, and in accordance with the Constitution and laws of the
     Republic, confirms that every person has the right to life, and that
     life begins at the moment of conception.

         Consequently, it accepts the content of the terms "reproductive
     health", "sexual health", "maternity without risk", "reproductive
     rights", "sexual rights" and "regulation of fertility" in the Platform
     for Action, but it makes an express reservation to the content of these
     terms, or any others, if they include abortion or interruption of
     pregnancy as a component.

         We confirm the position taken by our country at the International
     Conference on Population and Development, and these reservations apply
     to all regional and international agreements referring to these
     concepts.

         In accordance with the above-mentioned rules of procedure, we
     request that this statement of reservations be included in full in the
     final report of this Conference.

8.   The representative of Egypt submitted the following written statement:

         The participation of Egypt in the Fourth World Conference on Women
     reflects its conviction of the importance of women's issues and their
     promotion.  It is an extension of Egypt's participation in the three
     preceding conferences on women, in addition to its having been host to
     one of the most important international conferences, the International
     Conference on Population and Development.

         The Egyptian delegation would like to register the fact that its
     understanding of the texts included in the Platform for Action of the
     Fourth World Conference on Women that refer to sexual and reproductive
     relations rests on the basis that these relations are within the
     framework of a marital bond and that the family is understood to be the
     basic unit of society.  Egypt's compliance with the recommendations
     contained in the Platform for Action will be conditional on complete
     respect for the rights of national sovereignty and various moral and
     religious values and conformity to our Constitution and the precepts of
     law and with the divine guidance of our true and tolerant religious law.

         The Egyptian delegation would also like to register the fact that
     its reading and understanding of the paragraphs relating to inheritance
     rights in the Platform for Action, particularly paragraph 274 (d), will
     be against the background of complete respect for the laws of
     inheritance in the Islamic Shariah and in accordance with the provisions
     of the law and the Constitution.

         The Egyptian delegation requests that this statement in its entirety
     should be included in the official report of the Fourth World Conference
     on Women.

9.   The representatives of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania submitted the
following written statement:

         Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania wish to express a reservation
     regarding paragraph 5 of the Platform for Action.  We feel it is
     essential that the mission statement reflect a strong commitment by the
     international community to all the world's women and that the message
     should be all-encompassing.  Paragraph 5 in its present form is
     exclusionary and contradicts the principle of universality, which should
     apply to all States Members of the United Nations.

         The changes in the present paragraph are also a violation of the
     rules of procedure in light of the fact that new language was introduced
     to unbracketed text already agreed to in document A/CONF.177/L.1 at the
     preparatory meeting for the Conference in March 1995.

         The concerns and needs of countries with economies in transition
     have been marginalized by paragraph 5, thus weakening the Platform for
     Action.  For this reason, our delegations regrettably feel obligated to
     place this reservation on record.

10.  The representative of Guatemala submitted the following written
statement:

         My delegation wishes to state that, consistent with the national
     interest of Guatemala, it is submitting the following reservation, with
     the request that it be included in the final report of the Fourth World
     Conference on Women:

         (a)   Guatemala has the sovereign right to implement the
     recommendations contained in the Platform for Action in accordance with
     the provisions of its Political Constitution, national legislation and
     international treaties and conventions to which it is a party, and
     therefore none of the provisions and recommendations of this Conference
     and of the Platform for Action may or should be interpreted as
     contradicting the aforesaid legal instruments.  In addition, these
     recommendations will be implemented in accordance with the development
     priorities of our country, in full respect for the diverse religious,
     ethical and cultural values and philosophical beliefs of our multi-
     ethnic, multilingual and multicultural people, and in accordance with
     universally recognized international human rights;

         (b)   Guatemala confirms all its reservations to the Programme of
     Action of the International Conference on Population and Development and
     its reservations to the Declaration and Programme of Action of the World
     Summit for Social Development, especially in relation to the topics,
     terms, conditions and provisions contained in the aforesaid documents
     which are repeated and re-utilized in this Platform for Action.

         In addition, the Government of Guatemala reserves the right to
     interpret the Platform for Action expressly in accordance with its
     unconditional respect for the right to life from the moment of
     conception and its unconditional respect for the right of parents to
     choose the upbringing of their children.  It endorses and guarantees the
     social, economic and juridical protection of the family on the legal
     basis of marriage, equal rights of spouses, responsible parenthood, the
     right of persons to decide freely the number and spacing of their
     children, and the dignity of motherhood.

         In conformity with the ethical, moral, legal, cultural and natural
     criteria of the Guatemalan people, Guatemala interprets the concept of
     gender solely as female and male gender in reference to women and men
     and reserves its position on the interpretation of the term "lifestyle",
     because its meaning is not clear in these documents.

11.  The representative of the Holy See submitted the following written
statement:

         "When one looks at the great process of women's liberation," one
     sees that the journey has been a difficult one, with its "share of
     mistakes," but headed toward a better future for women.  Those are the
     words of Pope John Paul II.  And he goes on to say:  "This journey must
     go on!"  The Holy See delegation joins its voice to his:  This great
     journey must go on!

         Women's voyage has been marked by false starts and disappointments,
     as well as by luminous achievements.  There have been times, as in the
     industrial revolution, when old forms of oppression were exchanged for
     new, as well as times when intelligence and good will have triumphed.

         The documents before us reflect that complex and uneven history of
     women's search.  They are full of promise, but often short on concrete
     commitment, and in certain respects one could ask if the long-term
     consequences will really serve the good of women.

         The delegation of the Holy See has worked hard, in a constructive
     way and in a spirit of good will to make the documents more responsive
     to women.  Certainly, the living heart of these documents lies in their
     sections on the needs of women in poverty, on strategies for
     development, on literacy and education, on ending violence against
     women, on a culture of peace, and on access to employment, land, capital
     and technology.  My delegation is pleased to note a close correspondence
     between these points and Catholic social teaching.

         My delegation would be remiss in its duty to women, however, if it
     did not also indicate several critical areas where it strongly disagrees
     with the text.

         My delegation regrets to note in the text an exaggerated
     individualism, in which key, relevant, provisions of the Universal
     Declaration of Human Rights are slighted - for example, the obligation
     to provide "special care and assistance" to motherhood.  This
     selectivity thus marks another step in the colonization of the broad and
     rich discourse of universal rights by an impoverished, libertarian
     rights dialect.  Surely this international gathering could have done
     more for women and girls than to leave them alone with their rights!

         Surely we must do more for the girl child in poor nations than give
     lip service to providing access to education, health and social services
     while carefully avoiding any concrete commitment of new and additional
     resources to that end.

         Surely we can do better than to address the health needs of girls
     and women by paying disproportionate attention to sexual and
     reproductive health.  Moreover, ambiguous language concerning
     unqualified control over sexuality and fertility could be interpreted as
     including societal endorsement of abortion and homosexuality.

         A document that respects women's dignity should address the health
     of the whole woman.  A document that respects women's intelligence
     should devote at least as much attention to literacy as to fertility.

         Because my delegation is hopeful that out of these documents, which
     are in some ways at odds with themselves, the good for women will
     ultimately prevail, it wishes to associate itself with the consensus
     only on those above-mentioned aspects of the documents that the Holy See
     considers to be positive and at the service of the real well-being of
     women.

         Unfortunately, the Holy See's participation in the consensus can be
     only a partial one because of numerous points in the documents which are
     incompatible with what the Holy See and other countries deem favourable
     to the true advancement of women.  These points are indicated in the
     reservations which my delegation has set out below.

         My delegation is confident that women themselves will overcome the
     limitations of and bring out what is best in these documents.  As
     John Paul II has so well put it, "The path that lies ahead will be long
     and difficult, nevertheless we must have courage to set out on that path
     and the courage to go on to the end."

         I would ask that the text of this statement, the reservations
     formally indicated below, as well as the statement of interpretation of
     the term "gender" be included in the report of the Conference.

     Reservations and statements of interpretation

         The Holy See, in conformity with its nature and particular mission,
     in partially joining the consensus on the documents of the Fourth World
     Conference on Women, wishes to express its position regarding those
     documents and make reservations on some of the concepts used in them.

         The Holy See wishes to reaffirm the dignity and worth of women and
     the equal rights of men and women and regrets the failure of the
     Platform for Action to explicitly reassert this concept.

         The Holy See, in line with the Universal Declaration of Human
     Rights, stresses that the family is the basic unit of society and is
     based on marriage as an equal partnership between husband and wife, to
     which the transmission of life is entrusted.  It regrets that in the
     Platform for Action references were not made to such a fundamental
     societal unit without banal qualifying language (see, for example,
     strategic objective L.9).

         The Holy See can only interpret such terms as "women's right to
     control their sexuality", "women's right to control ... their fertility"
     or "couples and individuals" as referring to the responsible use of
     sexuality within marriage.  At the same time, the Holy See firmly
     condemns all forms of violence against and exploitation of women and
     girls.

         The Holy See reaffirms the reservations it expressed at the
     conclusion of the International Conference on Population and
     Development, held in Cairo from 5 to 13 September 1994, which are
     included in the report of that Conference, concerning the interpretation
     given to the terms "reproductive health", "sexual health" and
     "reproductive rights".  In particular, the Holy See reiterates that it
     does not consider abortion or abortion services to be a dimension of
     reproductive health or reproductive health services.  The Holy See does
     not endorse any form of legislation which gives legal recognition to
     abortion.

         With regard to the terms "family planning" or "widest range of
     family planning services" and other terms concerning family-planning
     services or regulation of fertility, the Holy See's actions during this
     Conference should in no way be interpreted as changing its well-known
     position concerning those family planning methods that the Catholic
     Church considers morally unacceptable or concerning family planning
     services that do not respect the liberty of spouses, the human dignity
     or the human rights of those concerned.  The Holy See in no way endorses
     contraception or the use of condoms, either as a family planning measure
     or in HIV/AIDS prevention programmes.

         The Holy See maintains that nothing in the Platform for Action or in
     other documents referenced therein is to be interpreted as requiring any
     health professional or health facility to perform, cooperate with, refer
     or arrange for services to which they have objections on the basis of
     religious belief or moral or ethical conviction.

         The Holy See interprets all references to the term "forced
     pregnancy" as a specific instrument of armed conflict, in the context in
     which that term appears in the Vienna Declaration and Programme of
     Action, part II, paragraph 38.

         The Holy See interprets the term "gender" as described in the
     statement set out below.

         The Holy See does not associate itself with the consensus on the
     entire chapter IV, section C, concerning health; it wishes to place a
     general reservation on the entire section and it would ask that this
     general reservation be noted in the chapter.  This section devotes a
     totally unbalanced attention to sexual and reproductive health in
     comparison to women's other health needs, including means to address
     maternal mortality and morbidity.  Furthermore, the Holy See cannot
     accept ambiguous terminology concerning unqualified control over
     sexuality and fertility, particularly as it could be interpreted as a
     societal endorsement of abortion or homosexuality.  The reservation on
     this chapter does not, however, indicate any reduction in the Holy See's
     commitment towards the promotion of the health of women and the girl
     child.

         The Holy See does not join the consensus and expresses a reservation
     on paragraph 232 (f), with its reference to a text (para. 96) on a right
     of women to "control over ... their sexuality".  This ambiguous term
     could be understood as endorsing sexual relationships outside
     heterosexual marriage.  It asks that this reservation be noted on the
     paragraph.  On the other hand, however, the Holy See wishes to associate
     itself with the condemnation of violence against women asserted in
     paragraph 96, as well as with the importance of mutuality and shared
     responsibility, respect and free consent in conjugal relations as stated
     in that paragraph.

         The Holy See, with regard to the entire section on human rights,
     with the exception of quotations from or restatements of already
     existing human rights instruments, expresses its concern about an
     excessive individualism in its treatment of human rights.  The Holy See
     further recalls that the mandate of the Fourth World Conference on Women
     did not include the affirmation of new human rights.

         With regard to the phrase "Women's rights are human rights", the
     Holy See interprets this phrase to mean that women should have the full
     enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms.

         With regard to all references to international agreements, the Holy
     See reserves its position in this regard, in particular on any existing
     international agreements mentioned in the documents, consistent with its
     manner of acceptance or non-acceptance of them.

         The Holy See requests that these reservations, together with the
     following statement of interpretation on the term "gender", be included
     in the report of the Conference.

     Statement of interpretation of the term "gender"

         In accepting that the word "gender" in this document is to be
     understood according to ordinary usage in the United Nations context,
     the Holy See associates itself with the common meaning of that word, in
     languages where it exists.

         The term "gender" is understood by the Holy See as grounded in
     biological sexual identity, male or female.  Furthermore, the Platform
     for Action itself clearly uses the term "Both genders".

         The Holy See thus excludes dubious interpretations based on world
     views which assert that sexual identity can be adapted indefinitely to
     suit new and different purposes.

         It also dissociates itself from the biological determinist notion
     that all the roles and relations of the two sexes are fixed in a single,
     static pattern.

         Pope John Paul insists on the distinctiveness and complementarity of
     women and men.  At the same time, he has applauded the assumption of new
     roles by women, stressed the degree to which cultural conditioning has
     been an obstacle to women's progress, and exhorted men to assist in "the
     great process of women's liberation" ("Letter to Women", 6).

         In his recent "Letter to Women", the Pope explained the Church's
     nuanced view in the following way:  "One can also appreciate that the
     presence of a certain diversity of roles is in no way prejudicial to
     women, provided that this diversity is not the result of an arbitrary
     imposition, but is rather an expression of what is specific to being
     male and female."

12.  The representative of Honduras submitted the following written
statement:

         The Government of the Republic of Honduras, in accordance with its
     belief in democracy, joins the consensus of all the peoples of the world
     in adopting the Platform for Action, regarding it as an effective
     instrument for the promotion and advancement of women to the year 2001
     and in the new millennium.  Accordingly, it reaffirms its desire and
     commitment to take the necessary actions to bring about the
     implementation of the Platform.

         The Constitution of Honduras provides that all men and women are
     born free and equal before the law, that there are no privileged classes
     and that all Hondurans are equal before the law (article 60).

         Articles 65, 111 and 112 provide that the right to life is
     inviolable and that the family, marriage and de facto union are under
     the protection of the State.

         The American Convention on Human Rights, of which our country is a
     signatory, reaffirms that every individual has the right to life from
     the moment of conception, on the basis of the moral, ethical, religious
     and cultural principles that should govern human behaviour.

         Accordingly, Honduras shares the concepts relating to reproductive
     health, sexual health and family planning in the Platform for Action,
     provided that abortion or interruption of pregnancy is not included as a
     family planning method.

         The Government of the Republic reaffirms that the family is the
     basic unit of society and therefore commits itself to strengthening all
     actions aimed at achieving greater levels of well-being, bringing into
     harmony the various segments of society.

         Lastly, we invite the international community to support Governments
     and peoples in their efforts to ensure that the implementation of the
     Platform for Action is as successful as anticipated and that our women
     will finally achieve equity, development and peace, which are so
     necessary to the advancement of our peoples.

13.  The representative of Indonesia submitted the following written
statement:

         While expressing our delegation's satisfaction on the adoption of
     the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action by consensus, my
     delegation at the same time feels unhappy about the fact that there have
     been numerous reservations made by the delegations attending the
     Conference.  This may give the public the false impression that our
     joint commitment to implement the Platform for Action, which is crucial
     to the goals of equality, development and peace for all women, will be
     difficult to realize.

         The concerns reflected in the reservations - and my delegation also
     has reservations on certain paragraphs which are not consistent with the
     national interest of Indonesia - should not in any way constitute an
     obstacle to our genuine endeavour to implement the Platform for Action,
     since we all know that the spirit and objective of international
     cooperation in this regard is indeed a matter of mutual respect and
     support for our common cause.

         Finally, my delegation wishes to request that its reservation be
     duly recorded in the report of the Conference.

14.  The representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran submitted the
following written statement:

         I would like to register the reservation of the Islamic Republic of
     Iran on the following issues:

         Although the family is the basic unit of society and as such plays a
     significant role in the advancement of women and promotion of human
     development, the Platform for Action falls short in recognizing its
     contribution and the importance of its stability and integrity.

         Concerning paragraphs 96 and 232 (f), our understanding is that the
     provisions of those paragraphs can only be interpreted in the context of
     health and the framework of marital relations between men and women. 
     The Islamic Republic of Iran holds that the rights referred to in those
     paragraphs fall in the category of existing human rights and do not
     establish any new rights.

         The Islamic Republic of Iran upholds the principle that safe and
     responsible sexual relationships between men and women can only be
     legitimized within the framework of marriage.  Moreover, the phrase
     "couples and individuals" should also be interpreted in that context.

         Concerning programmes aimed at sexual and reproductive health,
     education and services, the Islamic Republic of Iran believes that such
     education and services should be guided by ethical and moral values and
     respect the responsibilities, rights and duties of parents, taking into
     account the evolving capacities of adolescents.

         With respect to the issue of inheritance, the Islamic Republic of
     Iran interprets the references in the Platform for Action to this matter
     in accordance with the principles of the economic system of Islam.

         The concept of equality in our interpretation takes into account the
     fact that although women are equal in their human rights and dignity
     with men, their different roles and responsibilities underline the need
     for an equitable system of rights, where the particular priorities and
     requirements of the woman in her multiple roles are accounted for.

         The Islamic Republic of Iran affirms its commitment to the
     implementation of the Platform for Action with full respect for Islam
     and the ethical values of our society.

15.  The representative of Iraq submitted the following written statement:

         The delegation of Iraq has reservations with regard to paragraph 96
     of the Platform for Action because it is incompatible with our social
     and religious values.  Our reservation also applies to paragraph 232 (f)
     because of its allusion to paragraph 96.

         The delegation of Iraq accepts the text of paragraph 274 (d) on the
     basis of its understanding that this does not conflict with the Islamic
     Shariah.

16.  The representative of Israel submitted the following written statement:

         The delegation of Israel to the Fourth World Conference on Women
     wishes to submit the following interpretative statement on paragraph 46
     of the Platform for Action.

         Israel would have preferred that explicit reference be made to the
     particular barriers faced by women because of their sexual orientation. 
     However, in light of the interpretation given to the words "other
     status" by, inter alia, the United Nations Human Rights Committee, we
     interpret the words "other status" to include sexual orientation.

17.  The representative of Japan submitted the following written statement:

         My delegation would like to confirm its interpretation concerning
     paragraph 106 (k).  The delegation of Japan joined the consensus on
     paragraph 106 (k) on the following understanding.

         There has been a continuing debate on this issue in many countries. 
     Some countries, including Japan, have undertaken a review of the
     relevant laws, while others have not.  Bearing this in mind, my
     delegation confirms its understanding that relevant national laws can
     only be reviewed at the national or local level with due regard to
     national and legislative circumstances.

18.  The representative of Kuwait submitted the following written statement:

         My country's delegation attaches great importance to the Platform
     for Action adopted by this Conference and believes in its significant
     contribution to the advancement of women.  However, at the same time, it
     would like to register a reservation to anything which constitutes a
     contravention of the Islamic Shariah and the customs and practices of
     our Islamic society, particularly paragraphs 232 (f), 106 (k) and 94 to
     96.

         The delegation of Kuwait would like to have its reservation recorded
     in the report of the Conference.

19.  The representative of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya submitted the following
written statement:

         My delegation greatly appreciates the efforts made by the Main
     Committee and working groups of the Conference towards producing
     formulas which represent the common positions of the participating
     delegations and respect the beliefs of different societies and their
     private affairs.  In this context, the Libyan delegation has made every
     possible effort in its discussions with all the working groups and in
     meetings to join in the global consensus towards which this Platform for
     Action is directed.

         In view of our belief in the importance of the dialogue between the
     different cultures and civilizations of the peoples of the world for the
     achievement of universal social peace, we do not accept the right of any
     nation or civilization to impose its culture or political, economic or
     social orientations on any other nation or people.  In view also of our
     belief in the sovereign right of every State to draw up domestic
     policies in keeping with its religious beliefs, local laws and
     priorities for social and economic development, it is our understanding
     that the terms and expressions which appear in this document and their
     application will be within the limits of what is permitted by our
     beliefs and the laws and traditions which shape our behaviour as a
     society.  On this basis, our country's delegation would like to express
     reservations with regard to the following:

         (a)   The expression "sexual relations and sexual behaviour" between
     men and women, adult or otherwise, outside of a lawful marital
     relationship, which has appeared in a number of articles;

         (b)   The expression "sexual education and reproductive health" used
     with reference to the unmarried and outside the ambit of parental
     responsibility, supervision and care;

         (c)   The term "individuals" linked with the basic right of all
     couples to decide freely and responsibly the number, spacing and timing
     of their children.  This right is not accorded in our society outside
     the framework of a lawful marital relationship.  This expression appears
     in paragraphs 95 and 223;

         (d)   The entire text of paragraph 96 because it is inconsistent with
     our social and cultural values.  The same applies to paragraph 232 (f);

         (e)   Everything included in and intended by the text appearing in
     paragraph 106 (k), since it is contrary to local laws based on the
     Islamic Shariah.  The same applies to the text appearing in
     paragraph 106 (j) regarding abortion, since local laws do not permit the
     performance of abortion except to save the mother's life;

         (f)   The text of paragraph 274 (d), which will be interpreted and
     implemented in accordance with the Islamic Shariah, which guarantees
     females the right of inheritance.

         We hope that this statement and these reservations will be included
     in the official report of the Conference.

20.  The representative of Malaysia submitted the following written
statement:

         The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action are an achievement
     for all women world wide.  My delegation is gratified to join the
     international community in expressing our commitment to the Platform,
     especially on those provisions dealing with poverty, education, health,
     the elimination of violence against women in civil and armed conflicts,
     and the active participation of women in decision-making and economic
     development for their advancement and empowerment.  However, we cannot
     help noting a number of differences among delegations arising from the
     stand on certain issues by one group of countries.  While this group may
     adopt their own cultural standards and priorities, their insistence on
     others has inevitably resulted in the Platform for Action being
     accompanied by a number of reservations.

         I wish to state that certain provisions within the Platform for
     Action remain unacceptable to us, but in the interest of achieving a
     consensus, we do not wish to stand in the way of its adoption. 
     Nevertheless, in view of the differing cultural norms and the lack of
     clarity of certain words and phrases in the Platform, I wish to make the
     following reservations and clarifications on behalf of the Malaysian
     delegation.

         First, the interpretation of the term "family", and the terms
     "individual and couples" throughout the document refer to the
     traditional family formed out of a marriage or a registered union
     between a man and a woman and comprising children and extended family
     members.

         Second, we are of the conviction that reproductive rights should be
     applicable only to married couples formed of the union between a man and
     a woman.

         Third, we wish to state that the adoption of paragraph 96 does not
     signify endorsement by the Government of Malaysia of sexual promiscuity,
     any form of sexual perversion or sexual behaviour that is synonymous
     with homosexuality or lesbianism.

         Fourth, in the context of paragraph 106 (k) we wish to support the
     view that attention should be given to the prevention of unsafe
     abortions and the provision of humane management of complications from
     abortions as part of reproductive health care.  However, abortion is not
     legal or permissible in Malaysia and can only be performed on medical
     grounds.

         Fifth, in the context of paragraph 108 (k), while agreeing that
     adolescent health is an area requiring attention due to the increasing
     problems of unwanted teenage pregnancies, unsafe abortions, sexually
     transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS, we believe that parental guidance
     should not be abdicated and that sexual permissiveness and unhealthy
     sexual and reproductive practices by adolescents should not be condoned.

         May I request that these reservations be entered into the records of
     this Conference.

21.  The representative of Malta submitted the following written statement:

         In joining the consensus on the Platform for Action, the delegation
     of Malta would like to state that it reserves its position on the use of
     such terms as "reproductive health", "reproductive rights" and "control
     of fertility" as used in different parts of the document.  The
     interpretation given by Malta is consistent with its national
     legislation, which considers the termination of pregnancy through
     induced abortion as illegal.

         The delegation of Malta further reserves its position on those parts
     of the Platform for Action wherein reference is made to the Programme of
     Action of the International Conference on Population and Development. 
     In this respect the delegation of Malta reaffirms its reservations as
     contained in the report of that Conference (A/CONF.171/13 and Add.1).

         In particular the delegation of Malta cannot accept without
     reservation the expression "circumstances in which abortion is not
     against the law", the termination of pregnancy through procedures of
     induced abortion being illegal in Malta.

         The delegation of Malta reserves its position on the wording "such
     abortion should be safe" since it feels that this phrase could lend
     itself to multiple interpretations, implying among other things that
     abortion can be completely free of medical and other psychological risks
     while ignoring altogether the rights of the unborn.

         Furthermore, the delegation of Malta reserves its position on the
     use of the wording "international human rights instruments" and "United
     Nations consensus documents" wherever used in the Platform for Action
     consistent with its previous acceptance or non-acceptance of them.

         We request that these reservations be recorded in the report of the
     Conference.

22.  The representative of Mauritania submitted the following written
statement:

         My country's delegation would like to enter reservations with regard
     to any matter that conflicts with the Islamic Shariah and Islamic
     values, especially paragraph 96 concerning sexual rights,
     paragraph 232 (f), paragraph 106 (j) concerning illegal abortions, and
     paragraph 274 (d) concerning inheritance.

23.  The representative of Morocco submitted the following written statement:

         The delegation of Morocco reserves its position on paragraphs 96 and
     106 (k) of the Platform for Action, whose content is in contradiction
     with the precepts of Islam and is not in conformity with its spiritual
     values and cultural traditions.  Morocco also expresses its reservations
     on paragraph 232 (f), which refers to paragraph 96, and on paragraph 274
     (d).

         The delegation of the Kingdom of Morocco requests that its
     reservations be included in the report of the Conference.

24.  The representative of Nepal submitted the following written statement:

         The interpretation of paragraph 26 for Nepal shall preclude the
     freedom of conversion of one's own or someone else's religion.

25.  The representative of Paraguay submitted the following written
statement:

         The Government of Paraguay expresses its satisfaction that chapter
     IV, section C, of the Platform for Action is in conformity with the
     content of its National Constitution, especially article 61 thereof,
     which provides that "the State recognizes the right of everyone to
     freely and responsibly decide the number of children they plan to have,
     as well as the time span between one child and another.  Through a
     coordinated effort with the appropriate organizations, they are also
     entitled to receive education, scientific guidance, and adequate
     services.  Special plans will be implemented to ensure reproductive
     health and maternal-child health care for low-income people."

         The delegation of Paraguay points out that the concept of "methods
     ... for regulation of fertility which are not against the law", as
     referred to in paragraph 94 of the Platform for Action, will be
     interpreted in conformity with its national legislation.

         The Government of Paraguay interprets the term "gender", which is
     used in the documents adopted at this Conference, as referring to both
     sexes, man and woman, and has incorporated this term, as defined, into
     its national documents.

26.  The representative of Peru submitted the following written statement:

         Pursuant to article 34 of the rules of procedure of the Conference,
     the delegation of Peru joins in the general agreement on the adoption of
     the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, in so far as the
     principles and commitments established by this Conference are compatible
     with those embodied in the Political Constitution of Peru.  However, in
     accordance with the position it took at the International Conference on
     Population and Development and reaffirmed at the World Summit for Social
     Development, and at the sixth session of the Regional Conference on the
     Integration of Women into the Economic and Social Development of Latin
     America and the Caribbean, the delegation of Peru wishes to express its
     reservation with regard to the interpretation of the following points:

         The community and the State protect the family and promote marriage,
     recognizing them as natural and basic institutions of society.  The
     family and marriage essentially derive from the personal relation that
     is established between a man and a woman.

         The right to life and the consideration of a person from the moment
     of conception as a subject of law in every respect are fundamental human
     rights.  Therefore, the terms "reproductive health", "reproductive
     rights" and "sexual or reproductive health" as used in the Platform for
     Action must not include abortion as a method of birth control or family
     planning.

         The concepts referring to population policy must always be
     understood within the context of the protection and promotion of the
     family and marriage, responsible fatherhood and motherhood and the
     freedom of choice of the family and the individual.

         It is understood that sexual rights refer solely to heterosexual
     relationships.

         The criteria established for allocating resources can in no way be
     understood as restricting the right of Governments to have access to
     such resources.

         The reference to "existing" intellectual property rights with regard
     to the knowledge, innovations and practices of women of indigenous and
     local communities, including practices relating to traditional
     medicines, biological diversity and indigenous technologies, may in no
     way be construed as restricting the rights of countries and their
     inhabitants under national and international law.


27.  The representative of the Russian Federation submitted the following
written statement:

     Paragraph 83 (p)

         The Russian Federation takes the word "respected" in
     paragraph 83 (p) to mean that gender equality and cultural, religious
     and other diversity should be respected in educational institutions.

     Paragraph 191 (c)

         The Russian Federation understands paragraph 191 (c) to mean that
     political parties shall themselves determine the procedure for
     appointing women to their leadership bodies and that the State shall not
     put pressure on them to do so, while at the same time creating equal
     opportunities for the activities of political parties.  Under Russian
     law, this provision applies not only to political parties but also to
     political movements.

     Paragraph 204 (e)

         The Russian Federation understands paragraph 204 (e) regarding
     mandates to review policies and programmes in the context of ensuring
     equal rights and equal opportunities.  The basic principles for
     implementing this policy are enshrined in the Constitution of the
     Russian Federation.

     Paragraph 258 (c)

         The delegation of the Russian Federation takes it that
     paragraph 258 (c) relates to no other question than the transboundary
     movement of hazardous and radioactive waste.  The Russian Federation
     believes that it is necessary to aim for full compliance of Governments,
     international governmental organizations and non-governmental
     organizations with existing international principles and rules governing
     the transboundary movement of hazardous and radioactive waste through
     the adoption of special measures, including the establishment of a
     national legal framework and the definition of the various categories of
     waste.  The movement of such materials should not pose a threat to
     public health.

28.  The representative of South Africa submitted the following written
statement:

         The South African delegation interprets paragraph 96, which reads,
     "The human rights of women include their right to have control over and
     decide freely and responsibly on matters related to their sexuality,
     including sexual and reproductive health, free of coercion,
     discrimination and violence", to include the right to be free from
     coercion, discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation.

         The South African delegation wants to make it very clear that it
     does not want to be associated with any form of discrimination.

29.  The representative of Tunisia submitted the following written statement:

         The Tunisian delegation, by virtue of the powers vested in it, has
     the honour to confirm that Tunisia will interpret paragraphs 96, 232 (f)
     and 274 (d) of the Platform for Action within its fundamental laws and
     texts.

         The foregoing was stated at the meetings of the Main Committee held
     on 13 and 14 September 1995.  Tunisia will reject any provision that is
     contrary to its fundamental laws and texts.  The delegation of Tunisia
     requests that this reservation be included in the documents of the
     Conference.

30.  The representative of the United States of America submitted the
following written statement:

     Interpretative statement on the Beijing Declaration

         The United States understands that the phrase "hereby adopt and
     commit ourselves as Governments to implement the ... Platform for
     Action" contained in the Beijing Declaration, and other similar
     references throughout the texts, are consistent with the fact that the
     Platform, Declaration and commitments made by States (unless such States
     indicate to the contrary) are not legally binding, and that they consist
     of recommendations concerning how States can and should promote the
     objectives of the Conference.  The commitment referred to in the
     Declaration, therefore, constitutes a general commitment to undertake
     meaningful implementation of the Platform's recommendations overall,
     rather than a specific commitment to implement each element of the
     Platform.  Accordingly, the United States accepts this phrase on this
     basis, on the understanding that it does not alter the status of the
     documents or the recommendations contained therein.

         The United States understands that the references in the Declaration
     and Platform for Action to "sustainable development" are to be
     interpreted consistently with established principles and policies on
     this matter.  As was recognized in Agenda 21, our long-term objective of
     enabling all people to achieve sustainable livelihoods involves
     integration simultaneously of policies related to issues of development,
     sustainable resource management and poverty eradication.  At the World
     Summit for Social Development, States further acknowledged that economic
     development, social development and environmental protection are
     interdependent and mutually reinforcing components of sustainable
     development.

     Reservation on paragraph 5 of the Platform for Action

         As the United States has stated on a number of occasions during the
     Conference and in the preparations for it, as a result of domestic
     funding constraints it cannot agree to an increase in funding for
     matters dealt with in the Platform for Action other than in the context
     of reallocation of existing resources, or unless sources of funding
     other than governmental assessments are involved.  Accordingly, the
     United States reserves on paragraph 5 of the Platform for Action.  The
     United States fully supports the objectives of the Conference and is
     willing to work with others to ensure that there is a proper allocation
     of resources within the United Nations system and other international
     organizations, to address commitments made in the Platform.  In this
     context, the United States notes as well that many of the most critical
     actions to be taken in accordance with the Platform do not require
     additional funds from the international community and can be
     accomplished through actions at the national and local level.



     Interpretative statements on individual paragraphs in the Platform for
     Action

     Paragraph 17

         The United States understands that the phrase "radical
     transformation of the relationship between women and men in paragraph 17
     is a reference to the realization of full equality between women and
     men.  It is in that context that the United States accepts this
     paragraph.

     Paragraph 26

         Paragraph 26 of the Platform recognizes the important role that
     non-governmental organizations play and the importance of working with
     them for progress.  The United States recognizes the need for
     Governments to create an enabling environment for non-governmental
     organizations and that such an environment is critical to the successful
     implementation of the Platform.  The United States understands that
     Governments, in requesting that non-governmental organizations take
     action to implement the Platform, are thereby committing themselves to
     facilitating the efforts of such organizations in this regard.

     Paragraph 46

         The United States Government has a firm policy of non-discrimination
     on the basis of sexual orientation and considers that the omission of
     this reference in paragraph 46 and elsewhere in the Platform for Action
     in no way justifies such discrimination in any country.

     Paragraph 96

         The United States understands and accepts that paragraph 96, which
     concerns, inter alia, equal relationships between women and men, applies
     existing norms of human rights law to these important areas of the lives
     of women and men, and thus emphasizes the importance of freedom from
     coercion, discrimination and violence in relations between men and
     women.

     Paragraph 131

         While the United States recognizes that human rights violations can
     and do occur in situations of foreign occupation around the world, the
     United States continues to have reservations, as it did at the World
     Conference on Human Rights in Vienna, about any implication that foreign
     occupation is a human rights violation per se.

     Paragraph 166 (l)

         The United States understands the intention of the inclusion of
     "equal remuneration for men and women for work of equal value" to be to
     promote pay equity between men and women and accepts the recommendation
     on that basis.  The United States implements it by observing the
     principle of "equal pay for equal work".



     Paragraph 206 (b), (e) and (f)

         With respect to paragraph 206 (b), (e) and (f), the United States
     will seek to develop more comprehensive knowledge as well as to improve
     data collection on the issue of unwaged work, to the extent that funds
     are available.  We plan to consult, in a cooperative manner, with
     appropriate research and documentation organizations.

     Paragraphs 234-245

         A number of institutions, organizations and others have been
     requested to take actions to implement the Platform.  Although many
     institutions have participated here as observers, and non-governmental
     organizations have provided helpful inputs into the deliberations,
     Governments alone will adopt the Platform.  As a result, it is necessary
     to underscore the fact that when the Platform mentions the actions these
     other actors may take, it thereby invites and encourages the suggested
     actions; it does not, and cannot, require such actions.

         In this context, we understand that references to actions the media
     may take (such as those in chapter IV, section J, and in paragraph 33)
     are in the nature of suggestions and recommendations, and may not be
     construed to impinge on the freedom of the press, speech and expression,
     which are fundamental democratic freedoms.

     Paragraph 247

         The United States would like to underscore that it interprets the
     second sentence in paragraph 247 to mean that these listed occurrences
     can cause environmental degradation in certain circumstances but not in
     others.  The United States also remains concerned about the reference to
     "the use and testing of nuclear weaponry" in this paragraph, which
     appears not to have been reviewed fully in the working group.

     Paragraph 293

         The United States understands and accepts that references to
     commitments in paragraph 293, references to what the Platform "requires"
     in paragraphs 4 and 5, and other similar references throughout the
     texts, including the Declaration, are consistent with the fact that the
     Platform, Declaration and commitments made by States (unless such States
     indicate to the contrary) are not legally binding, and that they consist
     of recommendations concerning how States can and should promote the
     human rights of women.  Accordingly, the United States understands and
     accepts that such terms as used in these documents suggest practical
     measures to help promote the human rights of women, and do not alter the
     status of the documents or the recommendations contained therein.

     Paragraph 353

         The United States reiterates that, with respect to paragraph 353, it
     is not one of the countries that have accepted an "agreed target" for
     official development assistance or have made a commitments to fulfil
     such a target.  We believe that national Governments, not international
     donors, must have primary responsibility for their country's
     development.  Targets detract from the more important issues of the
     effectiveness and quality of aid and the policies of the recipient
     country.  The United States has traditionally been one of the largest
     aid donors in volume terms and will continue to work with developing
     countries to provide aid in support of their efforts.

         In addition, the United States understands and accepts the reference
     in paragraph 353 to increasing the share of official development
     assistance for social development programmes to apply to only those
     countries that have accepted the target.

31.  The representative of Vanuatu submitted the following written statement:

         The Republic of Vanuatu has come to the Fourth World Conference on
     Women in Beijing for two purposes:  first, to show solidarity with the
     world community concerning the advancement and rights of women, and
     second, to learn from other countries about what can be done to improve
     the situation of women.

         In this respect, the delegation of Vanuatu has fully participated in
     the plenary meetings of the Conference as well as in the Main Committee
     and the working groups.

         The delegation of Vanuatu recognizes the spirit of conciliation and
     compromise that has gone into the finalization of the Platform for
     Action.  At the same time, the delegation notes that Vanuatu is a small
     country which has grown out of a strong fundamental traditional past and
     which now is changing in the midst of modern social, economic and
     political evolution.

         While therefore endorsing the Platform for Action of this important
     Conference, the Vanuatu delegation wishes to state that its endorsement
     of the Platform is made with full respect for the constitutional,
     religious and traditional principles which the sovereign State has
     inherited and kept for the good government of our nation.

32.  The representative of Venezuela submitted the following written
statement:

         With a view to speeding up the general debate in order to arrive at
     a consensus on the Platform for Action, the official delegation of
     Venezuela makes the following statement of reservations and requests
     that it be included in full in the final report of the Conference.

         The concepts of family planning, sexual health, reproductive health,
     maternity without risk, regulation of fertility, reproductive rights and
     sexual rights are acceptable provided that they do not include abortion
     or voluntary interruption of pregnancy.

         Similarly, Venezuela expresses a reservation with regard to the
     concept of unwanted pregnancy, since the reference to "unwanted
     pregnancy" could be argued in the opposite sense, as implying acceptance
     of the right of a woman who has become pregnant against her will to
     terminate the pregnancy (by abortion), an act which is illegal in
     Venezuela.

         Venezuela also expresses a reservation with regard to references to
     "unsafe abortion", because abortion under any circumstances is illegal
     in Venezuela, except when it is essential in order to save a woman's
     life.



                                  Chapter VI

                      REPORT OF THE CREDENTIALS COMMITTEE


1.   At its 1st plenary meeting, on 4 September 1995, the Fourth World
Conference on Women, in accordance with rule 4 of the rules of procedure of
the Conference, appointed a Credentials Committee, based on the composition of
the Credentials Committee of the General Assembly of the United Nations at its
forty-ninth session, consisting of the following nine members:  China, Fiji,
Honduras, Namibia, Portugal, Russian Federation, Suriname, Togo and United
States of America.

2.   The Credentials Committee held one meeting, on 8 September 1995.

3.   Mr. Pedro Catarino (Portugal) was unanimously elected Chairperson of the
Committee.

4.   The Committee had before it a memorandum by the Secretary-General dated
7 September 1995 on the status of credentials of representatives participating
in the Conference.  Additional information on credentials received by the
Secretary-General after the issuance of the memorandum was provided to the
Committee by its Secretary.

5.   As noted in paragraph 1 of the memorandum by the Secretary-General, as
updated by the additional information received, formal credentials issued by
the Head of State or Government or by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, as
provided for in rule 3 of the rules of procedure, were received by the
Secretary-General for the representatives of the following 106 States
participating in the Conference:  Albania, Algeria, Angola, Australia,
Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia
and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, Congo, Croatia,
Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Denmark,
Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany, Guyana, Haiti,
Hungary, India, Iraq, Israel, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait,
Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liberia, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania,
Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico,
Mongolia, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Netherlands, New Zealand,
Niger, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Poland,
Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Saint
Lucia, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra
Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Spain, Sri Lanka,
Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Togo, Tonga,
Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United
Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United Republic of Tanzania,
United States of America and Uzbekistan.

6.   As also noted in paragraph 1 of the memorandum by the Secretary-General,
in the case of the European Community, credentials were submitted for its
representatives by the President of the European Commission, as provided for
in rule 3 of the rules of procedure.

7.   As noted in paragraph 2 of the memorandum, as updated by the additional
information received, information concerning the appointment of
representatives participating in the Conference was communicated by means of
facsimile or in the form of letters or notes verbales from Ministries,
Embassies, Permanent Missions to the United Nations or other government
offices or authorities, or through local United Nations offices, by the
following 83 States participating in the Conference:  Afghanistan, Andorra,
Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain,
Belgium, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cape
Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Comoros, Cook Islands,
Costa Rica, Co^te d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador,
Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Georgia, Ghana, Greece,
Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Holy See, Honduras, Iceland, Indonesia, Iran
(Islamic Republic of), Ireland, Italy, Kazakstan, Kiribati, Lao People's
Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Lesotho, Luxembourg, Mali, Marshall Islands,
Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Morocco, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria,
Niue, Palau, Peru, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and
Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, South Africa, Syrian Arab Republic,
Tajikistan, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu,
Ukraine, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zaire, Zambia and
Zimbabwe.

8.   The Chairperson proposed that the Committee accept the credentials of
all the representatives mentioned in the memorandum by the Secretary-General,
on the understanding that formal credentials for representatives referred to
in paragraph 2 of the Secretary-General's memorandum, would be communicated to
the Secretary-General as soon as possible.  The following draft resolution was
proposed by the Chairperson for adoption by the Committee:

         "The Credentials Committee,

         "Having examined the credentials of the representatives to the
     Fourth World Conference on Women referred to in paragraphs 1 and 2 of
     the memorandum by the Secretary-General dated 7 September 1995,

         "Accepts the credentials of the representatives concerned."

9.   The draft resolution was adopted by the Committee without a vote.

10.  Subsequently, the Chairperson proposed that the Committee recommend to
the Conference the adoption of a draft resolution approving the report of the
Credentials Committee.  The proposal was adopted by the Committee without a
vote.


                        Action taken by the Conference

11.  At the 12th plenary meeting, on 12 September 1995, the Conference
considered the report of the Credentials Committee (A/CONF.177/14).

12.  The Conference adopted the draft resolution recommended by the Committee
in its report (for the text, see chap. I, resolution 3).  The States and the
regional economic integration organization that participated in the Conference
are listed in chapter II, paragraph 3.


                                  Chapter VII

                   ADOPTION OF THE REPORT OF THE CONFERENCE


1.   At the 16th plenary meeting, on 15 September 1995, the Rapporteur-
General introduced and orally revised the draft report of the Conference
(A/CONF.177/L.7 and Add.1).

2.   At the same meeting, the Conference adopted the draft report as orally
revised and authorized the Rapporteur-General to complete the report, in
conformity with the practice of the United Nations, with a view to its
submission to the General Assembly at its fiftieth session.



                                 Chapter VIII

                           CLOSURE OF THE CONFERENCE


1.   At the 16th plenary meeting, on 15 September 1995, the representative of
the Philippines, on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that
are members of the Group of 77, introduced a draft resolution (A/CONF.177/L.8)
entitled "Expression of thanks to the people and Government of the People's
Republic of China".

2.   At the same meeting, the Conference adopted the draft resolution (for
the text, see chap. I, resolution 2).

3.   Statements were made by the representatives of the Philippines (on
behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the
Group of 77), Spain (on behalf of the European Community), Senegal (on behalf
of the African States), Papua New Guinea (on behalf of the Asian States),
Ukraine (on behalf of the Eastern European States), Barbados (on behalf of the
Latin American and Caribbean States) and Malta (on behalf of the Western
European and other States).

4.   After statements by the Secretary-General of the Conference and the
Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the
President of the Conference made a statement and declared the Conference
closed.


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