COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN
Statement by Ms.
Friends and Colleagues from the NGO Community and the UN System,
I take great honour in addressing you at the forty-forth session of the Commission on the Status of Women and extend a warm welcome to you all on behalf of myself and my colleagues at the Division for the Advancement of Women.
It gives me particular pleasure to congratulate you, Madam Chairperson, and the other members of the Bureau of the Commission on your election. We, at the Division for the Advancement for Women, look forward to working with you over the next two years. Under your guidance and leadership the Commission on the Status of Women will embrace the challenging task of accelerating the full implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action and play a key role in turning promises and commitments into reality worldwide.
On behalf of the Division and myself, I would like to thank Ms. Patricia Flor and the other members of the outgoing Bureau for their invaluable contributions to the work of the Commission and the advancement of women.
I am pleased to introduce the documents that are before the Commission on the Status of Women under agenda items 3, 5, 6 and 7.
I shall start with item 3 entitled "Follow-up to the Fourth World Conference on Women" which has three sub-items: (a) review of mainstreaming in organizations of the United Nations system; (b) emerging issues, trends and new approaches to issues affecting the situation of women or equality between women and men; and (c) implementation of strategic objectives and action in the critical areas of concern.
Seven documents are before the Commission under sub-item 3(a) on the review of mainstreaming in organizations of the United Nations system.
1. Document E/CN.6/2000/2, is part of a rolling report submitted annually in three stages to the Commission, the Economic and Social Council and the General Assembly in accordance with several Assembly resolutions most recent being 53/120. The report is an integrated review of the activities of the United Nations system, the work of ACC Inter-Agency Committee on Women and Gender Equality as well as the activities of non-governmental organizations with regard to follow-up to and progress in the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. Section III of the report provides information on matters related to specific mandates such as; (i) the situation of Palestinian Women (ECOSOC resolution 1999/15); and (ii) release of women and children taken hostage in armed conflicts and imprisoned (CSW resolution 43/1). Section IV of the report addresses the issue of women, the girl child and HIV/AIDS epidemic (CSW resolution 43/2).
2. Also related to this document is the report on the joint work plan of the Division for the Advancement of Women and the Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights which is an integral part of the follow up process. The report of the joint work plan was initially envisaged to be issued as addendum 1 of the report on the follow up to the Fourth World Conference on Women as indicated on that document, however, it was subsequently issued as a separate document under a double symbol E/CN.6/2000/8 and E/CN.4/2000/_. The joint work plan of DAW and the OHCHR is based on resolution 39/5 of the CSW and resolution 1997/43 of the CHR. The annex of the report contains the report of the workshop, jointly convened by the DAW, the OHCHR and UNIFEM from 26 to 28 May 1999 on the integration of a gender perspective into the human rights system.
3. Proposal for the medium-term plan of the Secretariat for the period 2002-2005 are presented in document E/CN.6/2000/CRP.2. The Commission is invited to review, comment and make recommendations, on the draft narrative of the sub-programme.
4. Under sub-item 3(a) the Commission also has before it document E/CN.6/2000/3, the report of the Secretary-General assessing the implementation of the system-wide medium term plan for the advancement of women covering the period 1996-2001. The plan was prepared in late 1995 following the FWCW and endorsed by ECOSOC resolution 1996/34. As it will be recalled a midterm review of the implementation of the plan was prepared in late 1997, and submitted to the Commission at its 42nd session in 1998 as well as to the Committee on Programme and Coordination and the Economic and Social Council for their review. In its resolution 1996/34, the ECOSOC also called for a new draft plan to cover the period 2002-2005. The preparation of the new plan was discussed by the IACWGE at its fifth session last week. It was decided that an interagency working group be established for the preparation of the plan following the special session of the General Assembly in June.
5. The report on the status of women in the Secretariat, contained in document E/CN.6/2000/4, has been presented by Ms. Angela King in her statement.
6. Also considered under agenda item3 (a) is the document E/CN.6/2000/6 on the implementation of GA resolution 50/166 which will be presented by the Executive Director of UNIFEM.
7. Document E/CN.6/2000/CRP.1 contains the results of the twenty-second session of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. The Committee reviewed the reports of eight States parties during this session earlier this year (Belarus, Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of Congo, India, Germany, Jordan, Luxembourg and Myanmar).
Under Agenda item 3(a) the Commission has before it several documents for information. These are: report of the SG on the improvement of the status of women in the secretariat (A/54/405); report of the SG on the status of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (A/54/224 and corr.1), as mandated in GA resolution 49/164; the annual report of the activities of UNIFEM (A/54/225); and finally the 1999 World Survey on the Role of Women in Development.
Sub-item 3(b) will address emerging issues, trends and new approaches to issues affecting the situation of women or equality between women and men. Within this context a panel discussion will be convened which will also draw from the outcome of a workshop convened by the DAW and hosted by Social and Economic Commission for Western Asia in Beirut in November 1999. The report reflecting the outcome of this workshop is submitted to the Commission on the Status of Women acting as the Preparatory Committee for the special session of the General Assembly (E/CN.6/2000/PC/4).
Under agenda item 5 the Commission has before it document E/CN.6/2000/5, note by the Secretariat on follow-up to resolutions and decisions of the Economic and Social Council which will be taken up for the first time on the agenda of the Commission. This report contains a summary of actions already taken by the Commission on the Status of Women to implement the recommendations of ECOSOC as well as recommendations for further action which the Commission may wish to take or address to the Council.
In addition to the documents I have presented, a working group established by the Commission will review under agenda item 6 two documents containing notes by the Secretary General transmitting confidential and non-confidential list of communications E/CN.6/2000/CR.35 and E/CN.6/2000/SW/COMM.LIST/34 respectively, concerning the status of women.
Last but not least, Madam Chairperson, the Commission will have before it the draft provisional agenda for its forty-fifth session. In this connection, I would like to draw the attention of the commission to the note by the Secretariat on proposals for the provisional agenda contained in document E/CN.6/2000/CRP.3. The Commission may wish to prepare at its next session in 2001 a new multi-year work programme for the years 2002 to 2005, taking into account the outcome of the upcoming special session, as well as the results of the review by the Economic and Social Council of integrated and coordinated follow-up to all UN conferences and summits. This is also among the recommendations contained in document E/CN.6/2000/5 referred to earlier. The Commission is invited in the conference room paper to consider proposed priority themes for the provisional agenda of its 45th session in 2001.
Madam Chairperson, in closing my statement, I would like to reiterate the readiness of the Division for the Advancement of Women to assist you and members of the Bureau in our common endeavour for gender equality within the work of the Commission on the Status of Women.