Inter-Agency Network on Women and Gender Equality, IANWGE
Inter-Agency Network on IANWGE/2002/4
Women and Gender Equality February 2002
New York, 26 February - 1 March 2002


Women, Peace and Security

Task Manager: OSAGI

Background

The Task Force on women, peace and security consists of: DAW, DDA, DPA, DPKO, DPI, ILO, OCHA, OHCHR, OHRM, SRSGAC, UNDP, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNIFEM, UNU, WFP and IOM (observer). The Task Force is chaired by Ms. Angela E.V. King, Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women.


Activities of the Task Force

Throughout the reporting period, the Task Force met eight times to discuss the action plan for the implementation of resolution 1325 of the Security Council and the outline of the study on women, peace and security; substantive contributions by Task Force members; as well as funding issues.

Other meetings included briefings by the outgoing Head of the Office of Gender Affairs in UNMIK, the Head of the Gender Unit in UNTAET and Gender Adviser in Afghanistan. The participants discussed, inter alia, the placement of the gender unit and lines of communications within the Missions; practical aspects of gender mainstreaming and coordination of gender issues; and the terms of reference and the Office's role within the Missions.

On 31 October 2001, the first "anniversary" of the Security Council resolution 1325, the Task Force hosted a panel discussion at UN Headquarters with the participation of Mr. Brian Cowen, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ireland (President of the Security Council); Mr. Kieran Prendergast, USG, DPA; Mr. Jean-Marie Guéhenno, USG, DPKO; Mr. Jayantha Dhanapal, USG, DDA; Mr. Kenzo Oshima, USG, OCHA; and Mr. Sergio Vieira de Mello, SRSG, UNTAET. The panel was hosted by the Chair of the IANWGE, Angela King.

System-wide implementation plan for Security Council resolution 1325 (2000) Action Plan

Following the adoption of the resolution by the Security Council, the Task Force decided to prepare a system wide action plan. Contributions from all United Nations entities in their respective areas of activity were received and reviewed by the Task Force for inclusion in the Action Plan.

The Plan was agreed to and finalized by all members and contains activities and steps to be taken by the United Nations system in order to implement the resolution. It covers all areas identified in the resolution. The IANWGE will need to discuss how the plan will be monitored.

Study mandated by Security Council resolution 1325

The Security Council resolution 1325 (2000) on "Women, peace and security" mandated the Secretary-General to carry out a study on the impact of armed conflict on women and girls, the role of women in peace-building and the gender dimensions of peace processes and conflict resolution. The resolution also called for a report by the Secretary-General to the Security Council on the results of the study.

The study is being prepared by two consultants, Ms. Dyan Mazurana and Ms. Sandra Whitworth. Additional expertise has been provided on specific issues. The study will be complemented by the UNIFEM publication on 2002 Progress of the World's Women, which is expected to be finalized in July. Another contribution will be a manual of standard operating procedures on gender mainstreaming in multi-dimensional peacekeeping operations which is currently being prepared by DPKO. The study will be reviewed by a Review Group, a group of experts comprised of academics and practitioners from war-affected countries.

Concrete recommendations in the study will focus on improving the protection of women and girls in conflict situations; increasing their participation in peace processes; incorporating gender perspectives into peace accords; and ensuring the integration of gender perspectives in all areas of peace keeping operations, including in refugee situations and in the full range of reconstruction and rehabilitation processes.

On 18 December 2001, a brainstorming session was organized to review the proposed outline. It was attended by members of the Security Council, Friends of 1325 (an informal group of Member States committed to supporting the implementation of the resolution), the Commission on the Status of Women, agencies, academics, and NGOs. The meeting aimed at exchanging ideas and information, further developing the framework for the Secretary-General's Study, filling in gaps and giving feedback to the consultants.

Some critical points were raised with regard to the preparation of the study and the report to the Security Council:

  • It will be important that the study be widely endorsed and that as many Member States as possible will be engaged in the process.

  •  The study should focus on concrete and practical recommendations and pinpoint "good practices" from different regions. It should also involve different experts representing various constituencies and geographical areas.

  • The report to the Security Council should focus on the Security Council's role with respect to the implementation of its resolution 1325 and should include a set of specific recommendations to the Security Council on policy-making, institutional aspects and monitoring mechanisms.


Timetable of the study

  • A first draft was sent to the Task Force on 4 February 2002. The Task Force members were asked to submit their comments by 18 February 2002. We are most grateful to the many members who took the time to submit their comments to consultants.

  • A small group of experts - academics and practitioners - from war-affected countries are being asked to serve as a Review Group and readers of the study.

  • A panel will take place during CSW, which will be open to a broad range of participants. It is scheduled for 13 March at lunchtime in Conference Room 2.

  • A second draft of the study is to be circulated in mid-March.
    Discussion of drafts of the study will be organized for the Task Force in April and May to review and finalize the recommendations of the study.

  • The final study is expected to be issued by June/July.

  • The report is to be finalized in July for submission to the Security Council.


Related issues

In 2001, a constituency had been built in order to support the aims of Security Council resolution 1325 on women, peace and security. A group called "Friends of Women, Peace and Security" (or "Friends of 1325") comprising representatives of Member States was set up at the initiative of Canada, in order to broaden the support among UN Member States for Security Council resolution 1325.

International Women's Day

(Task Manager: DPI)

A task force comprised of OSAGI/DAW, DPI, UNIFEM and IANWGE was involved in selecting the theme of this year's celebration of International Women's Day 2002 at UN Headquarters. DPI is organizing the event. The theme will be "Afghan women today: realities and opportunities." The President of the Security Council (Norway) and other high level officials will address delegations, NGOs and representatives of UN entities reiterating international commitments toward Afghan women and girls and enhancing their role in reconstruction and decision making. In a second part, Ms. Sima Wali (Afghan woman delegate to the UN Talks in Bonn and the Brussels Summit for Democracy) and UN officials will interact with the floor. The whole event will be live webcast.



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