United Nations


Division for the Advancement of Women



United Nations
Division for the Advancement of Women

Centre for Refugee Studies
York University, Canada

                                 Gender-based persecution

                            Report of the Expert Group Meeting

                                     Toronto, Canada
                                   9 - 12 November 1997

                   United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women
                          Department of Economic and Social Affairs


        Preface  ..........................................................1

        I.  Organization of work
           A.  Attendance   ...............................................2
           B.  Documentation ..............................................2
           C.  Adoption of the agenda and programme of work   .............2
           D.  Election of officers  ......................................3
           E.  Opening statements   .......................................3
           F.  Working groups   ...........................................4
        II.  Summary of the Debate
           A.  The context   ..............................................4
           B.  Themes in discussion  ......................................8
           C.  Conclusions and recommendations   .........................11
                      DEFINITIONS AND STANDARDS ..........................12
                      DISSEMINATION AND EDUCATION   ......................15
                      MONITORING AND ACCOUNTABILITY   ....................18

           Annex I  List of Participants   ...............................24

           Annex II List of Documents   ..................................30

           Annex III Agenda and Programme of Work   ......................31


      The Expert Group Meeting on "Gender-based persecution" was convened to
address critical area E of the Platform for Action which concerns women and
armed conflict.  The meeting was organized by the Division for the Advancement
of Women/ Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DAW/DESA) and the Centre
for Refugee Studies, York University, Canada, as part of the preparations for
the forty-second session of the Commission on the Status of Women.

      Critical area E of the Platform for Action addresses several issues,
including the participation of women in conflict resolution; the protection
of women living in situations of armed or other conflicts or under foreign
occupation; the reduction of military expenditure; the promotion of non-
violent forms of conflict resolution and the reduction of the incidence of
human rights abuse in conflict situations; the promotion of women's
contribution to fostering a culture of peace; the provision of protection,
assistance and training to refugee and internally displaced women; and
assistance to women of the colonies and non-self-governing territories.

      Critical area E of the Platform for Action is intimately connected with
other areas of the Platform, including critical area D, violence against
women.  Similar harms to those directed at women during armed conflict are
committed against women in situations where there is no armed conflict by
family members, and are sanctioned by State action or inaction.  A common
theme underlying the issues in critical area E and other parts of the Platform
is gender-based persecution.  This theme can be seen through the need to
incorporate sensitivity to gender-based persecution, including rape and other
forms of sexual violence, sexual slavery and forced pregnancy into
international humanitarian law and a gender perspective into international
human rights law. It features in the need to include the notion of gender-
based persecution into the definition of international crimes subject to the
adjudication of existing United Nations ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals and the
Statute of the proposed permanent International Criminal Court.  In addition,
the theme runs through the Platform's emphasis on mainstreaming gender issues,
including the concept of gender-based persecution, in the training of police,
military forces and peace-keeping forces.
      The Expert Group Meeting considered three areas: existing and future
legal mechanisms for the consideration of claims of violations of the laws of
armed conflict against women and existing human rights violations to which
women are subjected; ways of enhancing women's security in situations of armed
conflict; and the legal claims and needs of refugee women and those who are
internally displaced.  It made recommendations with respect to legal
definitions and standards; training, dissemination and education;
participation; and implementation, monitoring and accountability. These are
directed at national, regional and international actors and seek to build on
the actions identified in the Platform for Action.

                          I.     ORGANIZATION OF WORK

                                  A.     Attendance

1.    The Expert Group Meeting on "Gender-based persecution" was held at the
Centre for Refugee Studies, York University, Toronto, Canada from 9-12
November 1997.  The meeting was organized by the Division for the Advancement
of Women, in collaboration with the Centre for Refugee Studies, York

2.    The Meeting was attended by eleven experts representing all geo-
political regions and  43 observers; three from Government; two from
intergovernmental organizations; seven from the United Nations system and 31
from non-governmental organizations and other sectors of civil society (see
annex I for the full list of participants).

                               B.     Documentation

3.    The documentation of the meeting comprised one background paper prepared
by the DAW; nine experts' papers; and four observers' statements (see annex
II). Because of their relevance with respect to the issues under discussion,
a number of United Nations documents and other reference papers were made

                  C.     Adoption of the agenda and programme of work

4.    At its opening session on 9 November 1997, the meeting adopted its
agenda and proposed programme of work as follows (annex III):

      -    Opening of the meeting and opening statements
      -    Election of officers
      -    Adoption of programme of work
      -    Presentation of papers
           * background paper
           * experts' papers
           * observers' papers and statements
      -    General discussion
      -    Working group discussions on
           * existing and future legal mechanisms for the consideration of
           claims of violations against women of the laws of armed conflict
           and human rights abuses;
           * ways of enhancing women's security in armed conflict;
           * the legal claims and needs of women refugees and
           internallydisplaced persons.
      -    Presentation of reports from working groups
      -    Adoption of the report of the meeting
      -    Closing of the Expert Group Meeting      

                         D.     Election of officers

5.    At its opening session, the meeting elected the following officers:

      Chairperson        Ms. Hina Jilani  (Pakistan)
      Vice-Chairperson   Judge Navanethem Pillay (South Africa)
      Rapporteur         Ms. Christine Chinkin  (United Kingdom)

                         E.     Opening statements

6.    The Expert Group Meeting was opened by Ms. Jane Connors, Chief, Women's
Rights Unit, Division for the Advancement of Women. She welcomed the
participants and expressed her appreciation to the Centre for Refugee Studies
at York University for hosting the event, and for the support and cooperation
provided by its Director, Professor Anne Bayefsky, and her staff during the
preparations for the meeting.

7.    Ms. Connors placed the meeting in the framework of the Beijing Platform
for Action and outlined the opportunities it had to contribute to the work of
the Commission in the Status of Women (CSW), as well as to influence the work
of other bodies and organizations with respect to the issues confronting women
affected by armed conflict.  She noted that while earlier Expert Group
Meetings hosted by the Division had addressed women's participation in
political decision-making and conflict resolution, and violence against women
generally, none of the Division's Expert Group Meetings had, as yet, dealt
with the protection of women in times of armed conflict, national and
international accountability for that protection, steps that are necessary to
reduce the incidence of human rights abuses of women in conflict situations,
nor measures necessary for the protection of women refugees and women who are
internally displaced as a result of conflict.  The Division had identified
gender-based persecution as a possible risk shared by women in situations of 
armed conflict and those who seek to escape armed conflict internally and via
refugee flight.  The Expert Group Meeting had therefore been convened to
address these risks and, building on the Platform for Action, to make concrete
suggestions for the international community, national governments and civil

8.    In her opening statement, Professor Anne Bayefsky, Director of the
Centre for Refugee Studies, York University, welcomed participants and
indicated that it was appropriate that the meeting was being held in Canada
which had, over the years, sought to promote the interests of women affected
by armed conflict and it was particularly appropriate that it was taking place
at York University as Judge Louise Arbour, currently the Prosecutor for the
ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals for the Former Yugoslavia and Rwanda had served
as a professor in the law department of that University.  She stressed the
opportunity that the Meeting had to develop the recommendations in the
Platform for Action and to provide guidance for bodies such as the CSW and the
Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women.

9.    Professor Lorna Marsden, President of York University, also welcomed the
experts and other participants in the meeting.

                              F.     Working groups

10.   Three working groups were established to elaborate recommendations for
action at the national, regional and international level. Their discussions
related to three themes: (a) existing and future legal mechanisms for the
consideration of claims of violations against women; (b)  ways of enhancing
women's security in armed conflict and (c) legal claims and needs of women
refugees and internally displaced persons. 

11.   Working group I on existing and future legal mechanisms was chaired by
Professor Anne Bayefsky.  Ms. Patricia Viseur-Sellers (Belgium) served as
rapporteur. Working group II on women's security in armed conflict was chaired
by Ms. Elisabeth Rehn (Finland). Ms. Asma Abdel Halim (Sudan) served as
rapporteur. Working group III on women refugees and internally displaced
persons was chaired by Ms. Audrey Macklin (Canada). Ms. Gill Hinshelwood
(United Kingdom) was rapporteur. 

                         II.     SUMMARY OF THE DEBATE

                                 A.     The context

12.   The Platform for Action, critical area D, Violence against Women and
critical area E, Women and Armed Conflict, are intimately connected.  Similar
harms to those directed at women during armed conflict are committed against
women in situations where there is no armed conflict by family members, and
are sanctioned by their communities and by State action or inaction.  In many
instances these acts are committed with impunity, or are subsequently found
legally justifiable or accorded amnesty. Even when prosecuted, convictions are
hard to secure. Violence against women in armed conflict and in peacetime
conditions are not distinct legal phenomena, but form part of the same
spectrum of behaviour. And each occurs along a continuum of gravity. 

13.   The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women 1/ has
examined the causes and consequences of violence against women and has found
some especially applicable to armed conflict 2/. These include the connection
between militarism and masculinity and the shame and humiliation inflicted
upon an entire community through the sexual abuse of its women. Men's role as
protectors is undermined by failure to prevent abuse of women and children.
Such a focus however shifts attention from the harms inflicted upon women to
those on the community and underlines constructs of women as 'protected' by
male 'protectors'.

14.   The Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, 1993, the General
Assembly Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women 3/, 1993,
and the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, 1995 critical area I, all
affirm that violence against women both violates and nullifies or impairs the
enjoyment by women of their human rights, whether that violence occurs in
peacetime or in armed conflict. The  currently separate legal regimes of
international humanitarian law and human rights law must operate mutually, and
reinforce each other; both must be applied and made operational, so as to
ensure the effective protection of women in armed conflict. 

15.   The Platform for Action, in critical area E, recognizes that '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'. 4/  Women fall victim to all kinds of abuse during armed
conflict whether they participate as combatants or are non-participant
civilians. Women's usual subordinate status in society is exacerbated by
conflict which places them, and their children, significantly at risk from
various forms of harm.    

16.   Women become targets of abuse from different aggressors, including
regular army and militia members, irregular forces and members of their own
community.  This abuse includes forms of sexual abuse, rape, sexually
humiliating treatment, forcible impregnation, sexual slavery, and forcible
prostitution. Women may be kidnapped (or offered 'protection') and forced to
serve as combatants, servants, 'wives',  or members of so-called 'suicide'
squads.  The particular harms suffered by women in armed conflict are diverse
and complex, as must be the responses to them. 

17.   Mass groups of citizens flee the destruction and physical harm caused
by conflict and become internally displaced persons or refugees. Many of these
uprooted and displaced persons are females of all ages, including
unaccompanied girls and older women,  whose male family members are
combatants, have disappeared, or died. In fleeing, whether across
international borders or internally, women and children may be vulnerable to
violence and abuse en route.  Problems faced by women in refugee camps include
lack of physical security and privacy, sexual exploitation, physical and
mental illness, lack of suitable occupation and income-generating
opportunities, and lack of control over matters traditionally within their
domain.  The social dislocation and disruption that accompanies flight from
armed conflict may lead to increased intimate violence. 

18.   At the same time, during times of armed conflict and the collapse of
society it entails, women, whether or not displaced, play an especially
important role in attempting to preserve social and familial order.
Historically, neither the particular forms of harm suffered by women, nor
their role in maintaining some form of social order during conflict and in
post-conflict reconstruction have been addressed in  legal and political

19.   Women and girls suffer predominantly or exclusively from specific types
of harm during peacetime and armed conflict both because they are female, and
because 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'. 5/   Women are targeted
because of their sex and because of their societal roles, notably those of
mothers and carergivers. However it is important not to concentrate solely
upon the forms of sexual abuse, shocking as they are, but also to understand
and respond to the many other deprivations of basic rights suffered by women
during armed conflict. 

20.   Some forms of harm, which include violations of human rights and human
dignity; all forms of adverse discrimination; harassment; torture and cruel,
inhuman and degrading treatment, including rape and sexual violence; all forms
of slavery and servitude; forced prostitution and other forms of sexual
slavery; arbitrary detention and confinement amount to persecution, regardless
of the status of the perpetrator.  These harms may be considered as forms of
gender-based persecution, whether they are the result of acts committed by
governmental or non-governmental forces, or by forces or individuals that the
government either tolerates or fails to control. Although the  term 'gender-
based persecution' does not appear within any of the legal instruments, it
encompasses the forms of harm that are regularly suffered by women and girls
everywhere and which are directed at them because of  their sex. These forms
of harm are not always recognized by decision-makers in courts considering
criminal charges against perpetrators, or in claims for refugee status and

21.   Since the Vienna World Conference on Human Rights in 1993, there have
been significant developments in the treatment of harms experienced by women
in situations of conflict. The ad hoc Tribunals for War Crimes Committed in
Former Yugoslavia, and Rwanda, both explicitly incorporate rape as a crime
against humanity within their jurisdictions. The Statute of the latter
Tribunal also includes rape as a violation of common article 3 of the Four
Geneva Conventions. Through prosecutorial policies, forced sexual penetration
has been charged under this Statute as constituting a grave breach of the
Fourth Geneva Convention, relative to the protection of civilians in times of
war and as constitutive of enslavement and torture and crimes against
humanity 6/. The Rules of Procedure and Evidence, in Rule 96, recognize the
need for particular evidentiary exclusions in cases of rape and sexual
assault.  The United Nations has appointed a Special Rapporteur on Violence
against Women. The Inter-American and European regional human rights bodies
have also found rape in conflict to constitute violations of the human rights
obligations of States under the respective human rights conventions 7/. Some
States have formulated guidelines for decision-makers with respect to gender-
related claims for asylum. 8/ 

22.   It is essential that these advances are maintained and further
progressed. Other mechanisms that currently take little account of the 
relevance of  gender-based persecution in armed conflict should be encouraged
to incorporate this dimension into their work. Existing legal mechanisms at
the national, regional and international levels must become aware of the
manifestations of gender-based persecution, whether they are exercising
jurisdiction over individuals, international organizations or State agencies,
and whether they are concerned with violations of human rights, criminal
charges or claims for asylum brought by women. It is  also important that
legal definitions of  heads of jurisdiction incorporate this understanding;
that genuine access to such tribunals is not restricted for women; that
appropriate rules of evidence and procedure are adopted; and that the question
of redress for harms suffered by women victims is given full consideration.

23.   In 1998 a diplomatic conference will consider the draft Statute for a
permanent International Criminal Court (ICC), prepared by the International
Law Commission, and reviewed and amended by the successive preparatory
commissions. It is essential that women's issues are fully addressed and a
gender perspective incorporated in these negotiations and included in the
final Statute.

24.   In 1992 the Secretary-General of the United Nations considered the issue
of security in the post cold war era and in "An Agenda for Peace" addressed
the inter-related concepts of peacemaking, peace-keeping and peace-building.
In the 1995 Supplement to "An Agenda for Peace" these concepts were further
examined in light of the ethnic and nationalist conflicts that had erupted,
as well as the question of sanctions and disarmament.  Although the security
dimensions of poverty, environmental degradation, violations of human rights,
including racial discrimination, and economic tensions were recognized,
security remains primarily understood as State security from foreign or other

25.    Security can also be understood in a broader way that encompasses a
state of well-being in which an individual or group has the assurance of
protection from physical and mental harm, freedom from fear and anxiety and
is able to live life with dignity.  For women this includes freedom from the
fear of gender-based persecution in peacetime and armed conflict.  Regretting
that the particular threats to women's security were not given separate
consideration in the UN's "An Agenda for Peace', the  meeting considered it
essential that full examination is given to threats to women's security in
armed conflict.  The legal distinction drawn in the 1949 Geneva Conventions
and their 1977 Additional Protocols, between international and internal armed
conflict that underpins the laws of war, is not relevant to this broader
understanding of security and to consideration of the appropriate legal,
political and social measures to enhance attainment of that security.  Nor can
it be assumed that the end of armed conflict, or a concluded peace agreement,
entails the end of gender-based persecution, which may take different forms
in the reconstruction of society. 

26.   Accordingly, the meeting considered that particular attention should be
paid to three specific areas: existing and future legal mechanisms for the
consideration of claims of violations against women of the laws of armed
conflict and human rights abuses; ways of enhancing women's security in armed
conflict; and the legal claims and needs of women refugees and internally
displaced persons.  The need to view women as able to influence their own
destiny and act as agents for transformation and not merely as passive victims
was emphasized as fundamental. 

                        B.     Themes in discussion

27.   Certain themes cross-cutting the areas with which the meeting was
concerned prevailed throughout the initial discussions. The first, was the
need to examine existing international legal definitions to determine whether
they encompass claims brought by women and address women's interests. Gender
neutral language, for example in human rights treaties or the Geneva
Conventions and Additional Protocols, can obscure those harms that are
suffered predominantly or exclusively by women. Definitions may need to be
deconstructed to ensure the inclusion of women and women's interests in
mainstream legal principles.  All forms of prohibited conduct under
international law are traditionally analyzed and deconstructed for the
purposes of preparing criminal indictments, or for determining the existence
of human rights violations. Definitions need to be formulated and incorporate
the progressive development of the law, for example in the context of
jurisdiction of the proposed ICC. 

28.   The understanding of armed conflict was considered in the context of the
reality of the occurrence of gender-based persecution in States where the
factual existence of armed conflict is not acknowledged by governments or the 
international community. The need for context-specificity was emphasized, for
example with respect to understanding different  factors that contribute to
gender-based persecution and its different manifestations. The example of
forms of slavery was discussed and it was noted that traditional practices 
sometimes combine with contemporary conflict to create conditions of slavery
for women.  Each situation must be examined in its own social, economic,
political, geographic and cultural context. 

29.   The second theme was identification of obstacles to the attainment of
women's security during and in the aftermath of armed conflict. These include:
-     the demands of religious extremism and the targeting of women for real
or perceived failure to comply with religious or social mores, especially in
light of the embodiment of cultural identity in women;

-     the perception of violations of women's rights as personal and private,
not public matters; 

-     lack of reliable data on the incidence of gender-based persecution due
to the unwillingness of women to report offences committed against them and
the failure of authorities to recognise them as such; 

-     women's traditional role within the private arena, especially as
caregivers for the young, the wounded and the elderly,  may restrict their own
individual options and make them easy targets;
-     women's multiple identities, for example those based on race, ethnicity,
nationality, class, age, disability, and sexuality, may interact with, and
obscure, gender-based persecution;

-     the lack of women in national, regional and international
decision-making bodies, especially those relating to national and
international security; 

-     lack of understanding by those in authority of women's reactions in
situations of armed conflict. 

30.   The third theme was identification of women's needs. Appropriate legal,
political or social response rests upon adequate identification of needs which
should be investigated, not assumed, and will vary according to the particular
conflict and women's location within it. They will also change over time,
especially if the conflict is lengthy, or results in long-term military
occupation. Needs may include:

-     Protection, from immediate risks such as physical, violent attack upon
themselves and their children; from detention or internment; and from forced
prostitution and sexual slavery. Displaced women have special needs of
protection, whether or not they have crossed international boundaries; 

-     Basic services for survival, including shelter, water, sanitation, etc;

-     Protection from the economic and social destabilization, deepening
levels of poverty and lack of resources due to the collapse of the civilian

-     Assistance with children whose lives have been dislocated by conflict
and where education and other services have been disrupted. Women may have
been left alone to care for their own children and others, who have become
separated from their families; 

-     Health services, particularly those directed at the necessary treatment
in the aftermath of violent attack, such as reproductive health, treatment for
sexually transmitted disease, counselling, psychological care;

-     Accessible legal and social services, including for  those responsible
for investigating the commission of crimes and atrocities, whether national or
international. Such services must be physically close and accessible, and
staffed by  people trained in identifying those who may have suffered violent
abuses and in appropriate investigation, interviewing, and medical examination
techniques. They should include sufficient numbers of women;

-     Women combatants have special needs, including appropriate responses to
the pressures relating to denial of status and promotion, harassment and
sexual abuse within the ranks of their own armed forces, as well as
potentially as prisoners of war;  

-     Land-mine clearance, as civilians killed or maimed by land-mines during
and after conflict are predominantly women and their children. 9/

31.   The fourth theme was the determination of responsibility and
accountability for gender-based persecution. The role of a number of actors
is relevant: States, individuals, intergovernmental organisations,
international peace-keeping forces, non-state actors comprising international
civil society, including religious bodies, and the media.

32.   The fifth theme was to consider ways of implementing and enforcing legal
obligations with respect to the conduct of war and the guarantee of human

33.    In making its recommendations with respect to the protection of women
in armed conflict and its aftermath, the meeting emphasized that it was
committed to and interested in the prevention of conflict. It did not accept
the inevitability of violent conflict and stressed the need for members of the
international community to divert resources from military expenditures and
commit adequate resources and energy to preventive diplomacy, pre-emptive
measures, and the understanding and development of a culture of peace. 
Women's long-standing contributions to the understanding of peace should be
acknowledged and drawn upon.  Further, the meeting considered that the
responsibility of the international community, through such bodies as the
specialized agencies and aid agencies, is crucial for preparing programmes
that are helpful for women in a way that is relevant to their own perceived
needs, before, during,  and after conflict. Such programmes should support
women's own efforts and ensure women's equitable access to resources and
sharing of responsibilities.

                      C.     Conclusions and recommendations

34.   The  meeting adopted conclusions and recommendations. These were made
in the light of the Report of the Expert  Group  Meeting on Political
Decision-Making and Conflict Resolution, The Impact of Gender Difference, held
in 1996, 10/ the recommendations of which it endorsed, and the 1997 Agreed
Conclusions of the Economic and Social Council on mainstreaming a gender
perspective into all policies and programmes of  the United Nations system
11/.  The  conclusions and recommendations of the meeting were formulated to
take forward and develop the strategic objectives and actions identified in
the Platform for Action, especially  in critical areas D, E and I. 

35.   The meeting structured its conclusions and recommendations  under the
following headings: 

-     Legal definitions and standards;  
-     Training, dissemination and education; 
-     Participation;
-     Implementation, monitoring and accountability.  

36.   The recommendations are directed at the United Nations system,
intergovernmental bodies, especially the Commission on the Status of Women
(CSW) and human rights treaty bodies, especially CEDAW, regional bodies and
mechanisms, NGOs and other actors in civil society.  The meeting emphasized
that further and continuing research by United Nations and other bodies,
including INSTRAW,  into the impact of armed conflict upon women is essential
and should be appropriately funded. 

37.   The meeting recommended that:

-     Appropriate financial resources should be made available to implement
fully the recommendations agreed by the expert group meeting;  

-     Financial support for the implementation of the recommendations should
be a priority for Member States, the United Nations, its funds and programmes,
NGOs and other areas of civil society, including the private sector.


38.   The meeting recognized that women and men are affected by international
crimes. Women are subjected to all forms of prohibited conduct in times of
war, but the commission of sexual violence during armed conflict
disproportionately affects women.  Reiterating that the spirit and purpose of
international criminal law is to protect all humanity from all international
crimes, the meeting recommended that:
-     The governing statute of the proposed ICC declare in its substantive
part that all its provisions shall be governed by the international legal norm
of non- discrimination on the basis of sex;

-     Sex-based crimes be referred to in the Statute of the ICC, but  they
should not be explicitly defined, so that the legal meaning of these crimes
can be informed by the progressive interpretation of international law.  In
particular,  rape in the context of the Statute of the ICC should be left
undefined, but the elements of the crime should be understood in the practice
of the future Court as forcible penetration of the vulva, anus or the mouth
by the penis or of the vulva or anus by any object.

39.   The meeting recalled that the human right of equality before the law is
recognized in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR)
and elaborated in the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). Equality before the law predicates that
women have equal access to the protection of the 1951 Convention Relating to
the Status of Refugees (Refugee Convention) and its 1967 Protocol.  The
meeting recommended that:
-     Discrimination in the interpretation and application of the Refugee
Convention be recognized as in contradistinction to the Convention on the
Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women; 

-     The propositions articulated in this report with respect to the
determination of refugee status and refugee women be incorporated into the
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Handbook on the
Procedures and Criteria for the Determination of Refugee Status and the
Guidelines for the Protection of Refugee Women;

-     States parties to the Refugee Convention adopt guidelines with respect
to gender-related asylum claims;

-     The interpretation of the definition of refugee for the puposes of the
Refugee Convention and its Protocol should be informed by international human
rights and humanitarian law.  In particular, these legal frameworks should be
drawn upon to distinguish lawful conduct in armed conflict from that which
constitutes persecution and to demonstrate that lawful conduct in armed
conflict may constitute persecution. 

40.   The meeting noted that sexual violence may constitute torture and other
serious violations of human rights or a war crime or a crime against humanity.

As sexual violence in the context of armed conflict contavenes norms of
international human rights and humanitarian law, the expert group considered
that it meets the definition of -persecution' in international refugee law. 

41.   The meeting recognized that severe discrimination and harassment,
particularly, but not exclusively, in armed conflict or in an atmosphere of
insecurity may constitute persecution.  It considered that severe restrictions
on women's enjoyment of their human rights, including with respect to
education, employment and freedom of movement, such as forced seclusion, meet
the definition of persecution for the purposes of the  Refugee Convention in
those cases where women experience such restrictions as profound violations
of their dignity, autonomy and status as human beings.  The meeting  noted
that penalties imposed on women for violating social mores which do not amount
to violations of human rights may be disproportionate. In such circumstances,
social mores, and the threat of penalty for their transgression, taken
together, will amount to persecution.  Women who have been subjected to sexual
violence in armed conflict or otherwise may face ostracism, stigmatization,
discrimination, exclusion or violence from their families or communities as
a result. The meeting recommended:

-     Recognition that such ill-treatment may constitute persecution.  In
addition, it considered that past persecution, combined with the risk of
ill-treatment on return, may give rise to compelling reasons for non-return.

42.   The meeting agreed that torture may take many forms, and includes
physical and psychological abuse.  It defined torture to include threats to
family members and forced witnessing of or participation in harms to family
members and others. Torture, whether perpetrated during armed conflict or
otherwise,  constitutes persecution for the purposes of the Refugee
Convention. The meeting recommended that:

-     Sexual violence be considered to be within the definition of torture for
the purposes of the United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel,
Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment, 1984 (CAT).

43.   The meeting considered that the number of persons at risk of persecution
is irrelevant to the definition of conduct as persecution.  It agreed that
serious violations of human rights meet the definition of persecution whether
they are perpetrated against one or many people.

44.   The meeting agreed that feminism constitutes -political opinion' for the
purposes of defining who is a refugee in the context of the  Refugee
Convention.  It considered that political opinion or imputed political opinion
may be determined from behaviour as well as expressed opinion.  It noted that
behaviour by a woman that does not conform to cultural or social norms with
respect to gender roles may be construed as political opinion with respect to
gender roles or the political opinion, feminism.  The meeting also pointed out
that peaceful activities by women in the course of armed conflict may be
construed by opposing groups to impute political opinion.  Political opinion
may also be imputed to women as a result of the political opinion of male
family members.  The meeting recommended that:

-     Persecution as a result of expressed or imputed feminism, or failure to
conform to conventional gender roles, or because of activities during armed
conflict or imputed opinion as a result of the opinion of family members
should all be regarded as persecution on the grounds of political opinion for
the purposes of the Refugee Convention.

45.   The meeting noted that women may be persecuted because they are members
of a particular family or clan.  It recommended that:

-     Persecution as a member of such a group be considered as persecution on
the grounds of membership in a particular social group for the purposes of the
Refugee Convention.

46.   The meeting suggested that women are often persecuted, mainly, partly
or solely because they are women. It recommended that 

-    Where a woman's sex or gender is a significant reason for persecution,
her fear of persecution should be recognized by decision-makers as being on
account of her membership in a particular social group under the Refugee
Convention. In making this recommendation, the meeting emphasized that a woman
need not prove that all other women have a well-founded fear of persecution
or conversely that she would be singled out from among other women. It is
sufficient if the fact that she is a woman is an important reason why she will
be persecuted.  In addition, the meeting stressed that women may fear
persecution on account of race, religion, nationality or political opinion and
that fear of persecution on these grounds may combine with fear of persecution
as a result of membership in the particular social group "women".

47.   The meeting took note of  the emerging practice of the Security Council
using its powers under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations to
create -safe havens' or -secured zones' intended as a means of protection in
situations of armed conflict.  The meeting recommended that:
-     Where such mechanisms are used,  they should truly meet the definition
of safe haven or secured zone and such haven or zone cannot exist unless there
are resources committed to its creation and establishment; its objective is
clarified and its mandate articulated in full. The ability to protect and to
secure must be ensured, and no individual should be required to go into or to
remain in such a zone in the absence of true and voluntary consent; 

-    The presence of safe havens and secured zones should not affect a woman's
ability or right to seek or obtain asylum in another country.

48.   Noting the complex gender issues which arise in the context of the
creation and operation of safe havens or secured zones, the meeting
recommended that:

-     The Secretary-General convene an expert group meeting on peace-keeping
forces, their membership and accountability, and their role in maintaining the
protection of civilians, including women and men, in areas of armed conflict,
with special reference to the internally displaced and those located in or
moved to safe havens or security zones;  

-     The proposed meeting should consider the appropriateness of, and
conditions for, the use of force to maintain that protection, and the
implications for women as well as men.

II.  Recommendations relating to training, dissemination and education

49.    Many of the meeting's  recommendations relate to the need for training,
education and dissemination of information, as well as attitudinal and
behavioural change, as ways of developing a culture of respect for peace,
human rights and gender equality. These recommendations, informed by the
Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies and the Beijing Platform for Action, are
directed at the military, including peace-keeping forces, civil society,
professional and other specialist bodies, including those active in the
application of the laws.

50.   The meeting recommended that:

-     In training and preparations of materials the expertise within the
Division for the Advancement of Women, UNIFEM and UNICEF should be drawn upon
and utilized. The impact of such training should be independently monitored,
evaluated and assessed on a long-term basis; 

-     States should take seriously their legal obligation to disseminate more
widely the Geneva Conventions and Protocols at national, regional and
international levels. Similar steps should be taken to disseminate and enhance
the understanding of  the substantive law of the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals,
and, as it emerges, of the ICC. Standards in international human rights
instruments and mechanisms of implementing these standards should also be
widely disseminated. Electronic as well as traditional means should be used
for the purposes of dissemination;

-     Information on the jurisdiction and procedures for accessing the ad hoc
War Crimes Tribunals, human rights treaty bodies and other relevant mechanisms
should be widely and actively disseminated by Member States, the United
Nations system and NGOs, including to women's groups and in local languages; 

-     Tolerance for diversity, respect for human rights  and gender
sensitivity should be included in national education curricula at primary,
secondary and higher levels, including in teacher training. Curricula should
also incorporate international humanitarian law and human rights law,
including the jurisdiction and work of the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals; 

-     Legal education, including continuing legal education for members of all
levels of the legal profession should incorporate international humanitarian
law,  human rights law and gender issues. Continuing legal education should
be available to the Office of the Prosecution, the staff of the Registry, the
members of the defence bars of the Ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals and the ICC,
and the international judiciary;

-     Adequate professional support and appropriate gender training should be
provided for all departments of the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals and the ICC,
especially the Witness Protection Unit of the Registry; 

-     All UN peace-keepers should receive adequate training in international
humanitarian law, human rights law and gender issues. The training and pre-
training programmes of UN peacekeepers with regard to their mission should
reflect sensitivity to women's particular security rights and be informed on
cultural specificities. Trainers should include civilians, women and experts
in gender issues. A Code of Conduct for UN peace-keepers should be elaborated,
including behaviour of forces with respect to women. Women in afflicted areas
should be given training in land-mine awareness classes that are accessible
to all people;

-     All persons involved in refugee determination must be trained  with
respect to the impact of trauma, cultural difference and sex difference on the
willingness of women to disclose gender-based persecution, their ability to
present their stories, and assumed links between demeanour and credibility.
Training materials consistent with the Guidelines of UNHCR, revised in
accordance with this report, and other relevant documents, which are prepared
by one State, should be made available  to others. Compliance with training
directives should be monitored and the impact of training independently

-     States should be encouraged to ensure full incorporation and
implementation of international humanitarian law, including the jurisprudence
of the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals and the ICC into national legal systems.
Law enforcement agencies should receive appropriate training as to the
obligations resulting from this body of law and their gendered aspects. 

III.     Recommendations relating to participation

51.   The meeting recognized that the absence of women from the national and
international decision, law and policy-making processes means that their
interests are less likely to be raised, and that this affects the conditions
of peace and war. It recommended that:

-     States should be required to conform to the policies of gender balance,
gender integration  and gender mainstreaming agreed in the Platform for
Action, resolutions of the General Assembly and the 1997 agreed conclusions of
ECOSOC on mainstreaming a gender perspective, in general and when providing
gratis personnel to the UN; 
-     Women should be encouraged to participate in decision-making at all
levels and the UN and Member States should be encouraged to ensure that all
initiatives for peace are engendered;

-     All relevant international  bodies, for example the International Law
Commission, the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals, the ICC, the  human rights
treaty bodies, and extra-conventional human rights mechanisms should reflect
an equitable gender balance at all levels.  The recruitment, appointment and
promotion of all staff, including at the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals, and the
the ICC should be transparent and governed by the policy statements of the
Secretary-General with respect to gender balance within UN agencies. The same
principles should apply to seconded personnel;

-     Gender balance in international judicial posts should be an explicitly
stated goal; gender balance should be a consideration in judicial appointment
alongside the existing requirements of geographic distribution, and
professional and personal qualities;

-     Networks to identify appropriate candidates should be established and
data bases maintained by, for example, the Division for the Advancement of
Women.  States' responses to the policies of gender balance and gender
mainstreaming should be monitored by CEDAW through the initial and periodic
States parties' reports. The Special Adviser on Gender Issues and the
Advancement of Women and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights should
develop pro-active roles in monitoring these policies. 

52.   The meeting considered that gender balance and gender integration are
essential in all security and law enforcement agencies, including peace-
keepers, on the local, national and international levels, especially at the
senior ranks of these bodies.  The meeting noted that women are relative
newcomers to the military in most States and in UN peacekeeping troops. Women
in the mililtary are frequently affected by the subordinate position of women
in society, unequal status in the organization of the military and the
traditional masculine culture of the military. Accounts of harassment,
inhospitable environment and sexual exploitation within the military are
manifestations of the vulnerability of women members of the military to these
factors. This vulnerability exists within both regular and irregular armed
forces.  In his 1995 Report "Peace - Women in International Decision-Making",
the Secretary-General found that despite these pressures, women perform well
and make valuable contributions to peace-keeping and there is no reason to
doubt the importance of their work in national forces. The meeting recommended

Special measures  be taken to integrate women within the military to ensure
their security to perform their legitimate duties. Superior officers must take
responsibility in ensuring that women are not isolated within the military and
for the actions of subordinates. 

IV.     Recommendations with respect to implementation,
 monitoring and accountability

53.   The meeting emphasized the importance of strengthening existing
implementation and monitoring mechanisms and of integration of gender issues
throughout. It considered that implementation, monitoring and accountability
mechanisms include international judicial bodies, UN and regional human rights
treaty bodies and extra-conventional mechanisms, other international processes
such as the Secretary-General's representatives and special envoys. It also
underlined the valuable role of non-governmental organizations and other
aspects of civil society in monitoring the compliance with international
standards and ensuring accountability.  
54.   The meeting considered that an essential aspect of accountability is
ensuring accurate and extensive  documentation  of violations of women's
security rights . It  recommended that: 

Fact-finding and  monitoring capacities of national and international NGOs and
the UN human rights mechanisms be strengthened;

Support  be made available to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to
take measures for ensuring the security of human rights monitors in order to
facilitate performance of their tasks;

Support for the continuing development and psychological needs of the staff
members of the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals, human rights monitors and special
rapporteurs be made available, for example through the appointment of 
professional counsellors. 

55.   The meeting emphasized that investigations of atrocities committed by
non-State forces including those by para-military bodies are essential. It
also noted the importance of investigations of  violations by UN and regional
peace-keepers. International human rights law holds States responsible for
their failure to ensure an environment in which human rights can be enjoyed
and this can include the actions of non-state bodies.  The meeting recommended

The conclusions of  any investigations should be made public and appropriate
action taken by competent authorities. It drew the attention of the Secretary-
General to this recommendation and urged appropriate action. 

56.   The meeting considered that increased awareness of the requirements of
international criminal law can serve to moblize shame with respect to the
criminal behavior of States and individuals and address the culture of
impunity. The meeting agreed that:

The international community should  take responsibility for the safety of
those willing to testify before international tribunals to ensure effective
administration of justice.  An adequate protection programme for witnesses and
potential witnesses and other forms of ancillary services, including physical
and mental health, social and other services to promote the interests of
witnesses and potential witnesses and to ensure the effective functioning of
the ad hoc War Crimes Tribunals and the ICC is essential;  

A trust fund to assist in the provision of financial resources for witness
protection and related services should be established.

57.   The meeting emphasized the importance of State co-operation with
international criminal tribunals in areas such as the execution of arrest,
witness protection, securing warrants, ensuring due process requirements, by
inter alia, appropriate national legislation. It recommended that:

States  be encouraged not to create artificial obstacles to implementation,
for example by failure to ratify treaties. 

58.   The meeting noted that free print and electronic media can contribute
to international respect for human rights and to the maintenance of strong
civil society within countries. The meeting indicated that the media have a
responsibility actively to seek to establish and expose violations of human
rights and gender-based persecution in times of armed conflict and otherwise.
In armed conflict distorted or pornographic portrayals of women dehumanise
them and make them targets for abuse. The vital role of the media to make
visible the atrocities committed in conflict cannot be underestimated. The
media bears a responsibility to perform this function and to disseminate, as
widely as possible, accurate details of the occurrence of such atrocities,
irrespective of the identity of the perpetrators. It recommended:

Gender balance within all levels of the media to enhance a representative and
democratic media;

Attempts be made to afford safe access to members of the media and freedom to
transmit be ensured.

59.   The meeting recognized the important role that the United Nations
Department of Information (DPI) and the United Nations Information Centres
(UNICs) can play in contributing to international respect for a culture of
peace. It recommended that:
The DPI and its UNICs should recognize this role and take steps  to ensure
that press officers are fully cognizant of gender issues generally, including
in the context of armed conflict.

60.   The meeting emphasized that the international community must assist in
the establishment or re-establishment of national permanent institutions after
conflict, and in ensuring gender balance and the integration of gender-
perspectives within them.  It recommended that:

Special attention should be directed to long-term health needs such as
psychological consequences arising from  trauma and the effects of violations
of reproductive rights, such as being forced into bearing children or being
denied the freedom to bear children;  
The World Health Organization should take initiatives to maintain and
reconstruct health systems during and after conflict, and in so doing
especially focus on ensuring the provision of physical and mental health
services for women who have suffered the effects of armed conflict. 

61.   The meeting emphasized the need for land-mine clearance programmes and
urged States to ratify the treaty on land-mines and support the Ottawa

62.   The meeting recognized the potential of the human rights framework to
promote and protect the interests of women affected by armed conflict.  It
recommended that:

-     Issues relating to the treatment of refugee women in the countries of
asylum and the treatment of internally displaced women in their countries of
origin, returnees and women affected by armed conflict, should be addressed in
the work of the United Nations treaty bodies, including the Committees on the
Elimination of  Discrimination against Women, the Rights of the Child,
Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the Elimination of the Racial
Discrimination, against Torture and the Human Rights Committee;

-     The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination be urged to
take account of the interconnections between sexual violence and racial
categories, particularly in times of political insecurity; 

-     States parties to treaties, and in particular the Convention on the
Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, which continues to
apply in situations of armed conflict and does not allow for derogation in
times of national emergency, should be encouraged to include information on
the measures that they are taking with respect to protecting, respecting and
fulfilling the human rights of women refugees and asylum seekers, internally
displaced  women, returnees  and  women affected by armed conflict both within
their borders and beyond, in their initial and periodic reports;  
-     The concluding comments or observations of human rights treaty bodies
should address the specific issues of refugee and displaced women.

63.   Taking account of the fact that the general recommendations and comments
of the human rights treaty bodies have the potential to expand the
interpretation of international human rights law and may be drawn upon by
national courts to aid in interpretation and decision-making, the meeting
recommended that:

-     Treaty bodies consider formulating general comments on refugee,
displaced women and returnees and incorporate issues relating to refugee,
displaced women  and returnees into other general comments;   

-     CEDAW consider formulating a general recommendation on refugee and
displaced women, taking into account articles 1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15
and 16 of the Convention;  

-     In the preparation of its general recommendation on article 12, women's
right to health, CEDAW reflect on the needs of refugee, displaced women, and

-     CEDAW formulate  a specific general recommendation on gender-based
persecution in armed conflict;

-     The Human Rights Committee and the Committee on Economic, Social and
Cultural Rights take into account the effects of gender-based persecution on
women in times of armed conflict in their formulation of general comments with
respect to non-discrimination in the enjoyment of rights;

-     Treaty bodies that have developed early warning or special report
procedures should address the issues of women in armed conflict and refugee
and displaced women in the context of those procedures;

-     The Committee against Torture take account of incidents of torture of
women in any investigations initiated under article 20 of the UN Convention
against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

64.   Recalling the conclusions of the World Conference on Human Rights and
the Commissions on the Status of Women and Human Rights in this regard, the
meeting recommended that:

-     The extra-conventional human rights mechanisms take account, within
their mandates, of issues relating to women refugees, internally displaced and
returnees, and those confronting women in situations of armed conflict; 

-     The impact of the 1995 expert group meeting on the development of
guidelines for the integration of gender perspectives into human rights
activities and programmes 12/  be assessed  and that its recommendations be
applied specifically to address the situation of women refugees, the
internally displaced, returnees and women in armed conflict.

65.   The meeting noted the important role of the International Committee of
the Red Cross (ICRC) in implementing and ensuring compliance with
international humanitarian standards.  It also drew attention to the
influential position of the Swiss Government as the depository of the Geneva
Conventions. It recommended that:

-    The ICRC consider steps to increase gender sensitive interpretation of
international humanitarian law, including practices and policies relating to
internally displaced women and measures that might be taken to enhance the
status of its 1992 Aide Memoire relative to sexual crimes in times of war and
make it more widely known;

-    The Swiss Government consider including gender issues in its projected
meetings on the application of the Geneva Conventions and their Protocols, the
next of which is scheduled for 1998;  

-    The Swiss Government consider inviting other NGOs to participate in
these meetings as observers;

-    The ICRC consider, in accordance with its mandate, developing links,
including methods to share information,  with those bodies charged with
oversight of international criminal law, including the ad hoc War Crimes
Tribunals and the international and regional human rights mechanisms;  

-    The ICRC consider means of cooperation with treaty bodies in their
supervision of the implmentation of international human rights norms.

66.   Noting the increasing number of United Nations field operations,
particularly in the field of human rights, the meeting recommended that:

-    UN field operations teams should be constituted in accordance with the
principle of gender balance;

-    UN field operations teams should draw on the expertise within the United
Nations, including in the Division for the Advancement of Women, UNIFEM and
UNICEF and NGOs and others as appropriate, to develop gender sensitive
methodologies and guidelines and take cognizance of violations of women's
human rights;  

-    The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights should fully
incorporate gender as a component as it develops its field operations

67.   Recognizing the important role of United Nations peace-keepers in
contributing to global security, the meeting recommended:

-    Mechanisms for monitoring peace-keeping forces should be introduced, 
particularly in respect to the impact of their activities on women;  

-    Mechanisms for monitoring should be accessible by affected civilians and
should reflect the views of the civilian population; 

-    Violations of human rights by United Nations peace-keepers should
attract disciplinary action and appropriate sanction;

-    The Secretary-General consider the establishment of ad hoc committees to
consider the deployment of peace-keeping forces in particular areas or in
respect to particular conflicts.  These ad hoc committees should work in
partnership with UNHCR, DAW and UNHCHR  with a view to ensuring full
protection of human rights for all and a gender-sensitive approach in
situations of armed conflict.

                                   ANNEX I

                           LIST OF PARTICIPANTS


Programme Co-ordinator  
National Council of the Churches of
Christ in the USA
Church World Service & Witness
Someca Building, Boulevard de le
Revolution, 12
P.O. Box 3157
Kigali, Rwanda
Tel:  77213, Tel/Fax: 77199, (Hse) 85037, 
E-mail:  CWS Kigali

Ms. Christine CHINKIN 
Law Department
London School of Economics &
Political Science
Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE, England
Fax:  44-171-955-7366
E-mail:  chinkin@lse.ac.uk

Ms. Alda FACIO
Director, Women's Caucus For Gender
Justice in the ICC
Women, Gender & Justice Programme
UN Latin American Institute for
Criminal Prevention
P.O. Box 655-2070
Fabanilla, Costa Rica
Tel/Fax:  (506) 225-3784
E-mail:  aldaf@express.co.cr,
office: E-mail:  ICCWomen@igc.org
Tel:  (212) 967-7741, (212) 682-5354

Ms. Asma Abdel HALIM 
Equality Now
250 West 57th Street, Suite 826
New York, NY 10019, USA
Tel:  (212) 586-0906, Fax:  (212)
E-mail:  Sudaniya@igc.apc.org

Medical Foundation for the Care of
the Victims of Torture
96 - 98 Grafton Road
London NW5 1JH, England 
Fax:  44-171-813-0011

Ms. Hina JILANI 
Advocate, Supreme Court of Pakistan
131-E/1 Gulberg III
Lahore, Pakistan
Fax:  0-42-576-3236, Fax:  0-42-571-
Fax:  0-42-571-3078

Ms. Audrey MACKLIN 
Dalhousie Law School
6061 University Avenue
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3l 2X7
Tel:  (902) 494-1005, Fax:  (902)
E-mail:  a.macklin@dal.ca

Mr. Bernard A. MUNA 
International Criminal Tribunal for
Amahor Hotel
P.O. Box 749 
Kigali, Rwanda
Tel:  (212) 963-9906

Judge Navanethem PILLAY 
P.O. Box 6016
Arusha, United Republic of Tanzania
Tel:  (255) 57-4207-11/4367-72, or
(212) 963-2849/50, Fax:  (212) 963-
7365, In South Africa:  Tel./fax: 27
(31) 282851

Ms. Elizabeth REHN
Special Rapporteur on the Situation
of Human Rights in the  Former
Fax:  (358-9) 298-0531

Ms. Patricia Viseur SELLERS 
Legal Advisor for Gender Related
ICTY/ICTR, P.O. Box 13888
The Hague
The Netherlands
Tel:  31-70-416-5290, Fax:  31-70-

                            MEETING ORGANIZERS

           United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women

Chief, Women's Right Unit
Division for the Advancement of Women
United Nations
New York, NY 10017, USA
Tel:  (212) 963-3162, Fax:  (212) 963-3463

Ms. Philomena KINTU
Division for the Advancement of Women
United Nations
New York, NY 10017, USA
Tel:  (212) 963-3153, Fax:  (212) 963-3463

Centre for Refugee Studies 

Professor Anne BAYEFSKY
Centre for Refugee Studies
York University, York Lanes #321
4700 Keele Street
Downsview, ON M3J 1P3
Tel:  (416) 736-2100 ext. 66662
E-mail:  bayefsky@yorku.ca

Ms. Anne Molgat
Conference Coordinator


Ms. Rana KHAN
Regional Legal Officer
Legal Project
c/o Immigration & Refugee Board
70 University Avenue, 7th floor
United Nations High Commissioner For
Toronto, ON  M5J 2M5 
Tel:  (416) 954-1002, Fax:  (416) 954-1191

Chief, Standards & Legal Advice
United Nations High Commissioner for
C.P. 2500, 1211 Geneva 2 Depot
Tel:  (41-22) 739-86-43, Fax:  (41-22) 739-7308
E-mail:  landgren@unhcr.ch

Ms. Stephanie URDANG 
United Nations Children's Fund
179 Valley Road
Montclair, NY 07042, USA
Tel:  (973) 746-2208, Fax:  (973) 783-4054
E-mail:  sjurdang@aol.com

Ms. Daphna SHRAGA 
Office of the Legal Counsel
Office of Legal Affairs
United Nations
Room S-3420-I
New York, NY 10017, USA
Tel:  (212) 963-2250
Fax:  (212) 963-6430

Radio Producer, Women's Programmes
United Nations
United Nations Radio, Dept. of Public
New York, NY 10017, USA
Tel:  (212) 963-5270
Fax:  (212) 963-1307


Regional Advisor on Promotion of
Women's Human and Legal Rights
African Centre for Women
Economic Commission for Africa
P.O. Box 3001
Addis Ababa
Tel:  251-1-51-7200, Ext. 33681
Fax:  251-1-51-4416 / 512-785

Mr. Charles J. N. KASSANGANA 
Economic Affairs Officer
Regional Commissions New York Office
United Nations
Room S-3127 D
New York, NY 10017, USA
Fax:  (212) 963-1500
E-mail:  kassangana@un.org


Mr. Antoine BOUVIER 
Deputy Head                
International Committee of the Red
Cross Division for Policy and 
  Cooperation within the Movement
19, avenue de la Paix
CH - 1202 Geneva
Tel:  (41-22) 734-60-01, Dir.  (41-
22) 730-26-87, Fax:  (41-22) 733-20-57
E-mail: abouvier.gva@icrc.org

Dra. Aracely CONDE DE PAIZ 
Inter-american Commission of Women
Organization of American States
1889 F Street N.W. #880
Washington, DC 20006, USA
Tel:(502) 230-1650 (work,Guatemala)
(202) 458-6084 (CIM - Washington, DC)
Fax:(202) 458-6091 (502) 634-6879


Ms. Suzanne Rozell SCORSONE 
Head of Delegation
Holy See
Archdiocese of Toronto
1155 Yonge Street
Toronto, ON M4T 1W2 
Tel:  (416) 603-0191 (Home), (416)
934-3400, Ext.565 (wk)
E-mail:  s.scorsone@myna.com

Ms. Jennifer LEDDY 
Canadian Conference of Catholic
(Member of the Holy See Delegation)
90 Parent Avenue
Ottawa, ON K1N 7B1
Tel:  (613) 241-9461

Ms. Kirsten MLACAK
Coordinator, International Women's
Human Rights Division (AGH)
Department of Foreign Affairs
Lester B. Pearson Building
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1A 0G2
Tel:  (613) 996-9486, Fax:  (613) 943-0606
E-mail: kirsten.mlacak@extott23.x400.gc.ca


Ms. Donna K. AXEL
Legal Text Coordinator
Women's Caucus for Gender Justice in
the International Criminal Court 
P.O. Box 3541
Grand Central Post Office
New York, NY 10163,  USA
Tel: (212) 697-7741, Fax: (212) 682-5354
E-mail:  iccwomen@igc.org

Ms. Erin K. BAINES
1-3731 W 4th Avenue  
Vancouver, British Columbia V6R 1P4
Department of Political Science
Dalhousie University
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Tel: (604) 221-2065
E-mail:  ebaines@pop.intergate.bc.ca

Ms. Barbara BEDONT
Women's International League for
Peace & Freedom
65 Madison Avenue
Toronto, ON M5R 2S3
Tel: (416) 926-1693, Fax: (416) 929-5369
E-mail:  bbedont@interlog.com

Working Group on Engendering the
Rwandan Criminal Tribunal        
597 Carlaw Avenue          
Toronto, ON M4K 3K4
Tel:  (416) 778-9041 (home), (416) 978-4048 (work)
Fax:  (416) 978-7899
E-mail: probono.students@utoronto.ca

Ms. Colleen BURKE
Women's International League for
Peace & Freedom
342 Gladstone Avenue
Toronto, ON M6H 3H4
Tel:  (416) 535-6586, Fax:  (416) 535-5047
E-mail: leapfwd@netrover.com

Ms. Rhonda COPELON
Professor of Law & Director
International Women's Human Rights
Law Clinic (IWHR)
City University of New York School of Law
65 - 21 Main Street
Flushing, N.Y. 11367, USA
Tel: (718) 340-4300, Fax: (718) 340-4478
E-mail:  iwhr@maclaw.law.cuny.edu

Ms. Diane DUPRAS
Organisme Catholique pour la vie et
la famille, (OCVF)
90, ave Parent 
Ottawa, ON K1N 7B1
Tel: (613) 241-9461
E-mail:  ocvfcolf@cccb.ca

Ms. Hermina DYKXHOORN 
Executive Director
Alberta Federation of Women United
for Family (AFWUF)
#305 - 1324 - 11th Ave. SW
Calgary, Alberta T3C 0M6  
Tel:  (403) 228-2190, Fax: (403) 228-2249

Ms. Pamela GOLDBERG 
Associate Professor of Law &
Director, Immigrant & Refugee Rights
City University of New York
School of Law
65 - 21 Main Street
Flushing, New York, 11367, USA
Tel:  (718) 340-4312, Fax:  (718) 340-4478
E-mail:  prg@maclaw.law.cuny.edu

Ms. Judith Bograd GORDON
University of New Haven
Department of Sociology
West Haven, CT  06517, USA
Tel:  (203) 932-7426, Fax: (203) 932-1469
E-mail: jbgordon@charger.newhaven.edu

Ms. Gilles GRONDIN
Life Ethics Association
Campaign Life Coalitia
53 Dundas Street East
Toronto, ON  M5B 1C6
Tel:  (416) 368-8479

President, International Movement for
Rights & Humanity
65A, Swinton Street, 
London, England  WC1X 9NT
Tel:  44-171-837-4188, Fax:  44-171-278-4576

Ms. Isabelle Solon HELAL
Women's Rights Programme Officer
International Centre for Human Rights
and Democratic Development
Tel:  (514) 283-6073
E-mail:  srousse@ichrdd.ca

Ms. Sheila J. HOWARD
World Organization Ovulation Method
Natural Family Planning (CANADA)
1262 Hillcrest Avenue
London, ON N5Y 4N4
Tel:  (519) 455-6512, Fax:  (519) 451-9333

Ms. Sandra KLINE
Immigration & Refugee Board (Canada)
8th Floor, 10 University Avenue
Toronto, ON M5J 2M5
Tel:  (416) 954-6386, Fax:  (416) 954-6542
E-mail:  skline@istar.ca

Ms. Maja KORAC, 
Consultant of the Women in Conflict
Zones Network
Centre for Feminist Research
Centre for International & Security
York University, York Lanes 3rd Floor
4700 Keele Street
North York, ON M3J 1P6
Fax:  (416) 736-5752
E-mail:  mkorac@yorku.ca

Ms. Tamara KRONIS 
Faculty of Law & Department of
Political Science
University of Toronto
45 Timberlane Drive
Downsview, ON M3H 1J3
E-mail: tkronis@chass.utoronto.ca

Real Women of Canada
45 Sunnywood Cresent
Richmond Hill, ON L4C 6W2
Tel:  (905) 889-1993, Fax:  (905) 770-1117
E-mail:  realwcto@interlog.com

WOOMB International
160 Scripps Landing NW
Calgary, Alberta  T3L 1W1
Tel./Fax:  (403) 241-3555

6027 Meadowglen Drive
Gloucester, ON K1C 5V4
Tel:  (613) 834-3257, Fax:  (613) 745-9868
E-mail:  cm@interactive.net

Sister Concetta, F.M.M. MALLIA
Franciscans International
894 Bathurst Street
Toronto, ON M5R 3G3
Tel:  (416) 533-1920 (convent), (416) 461-8252, 
Ext. 2172, Fax: (416) 461-3493

Ms. Penelope MATHEW 
Senior Lecturer, Law
The University of Melbourne
Grattan Street
Victoria, Australia  3052
Fax:  (61-3) 9347-2392
E-mail: p.mathew@law.unimelb.edu.au

Ms. Nurjehan MAWANI
Chairperson, Immigration & Refugee
240 Bank Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0K1
Tel:  (613) 996-4753, Fax:  (613) 996-0270

Mr. Hamish NIXON
Department of Political Science
University of Toronto
Toronto, ON
E-mail:  hnixon@chass.utoronto.ca

Ms. Bruna NOTA
Canadian Voice of Women for Peace
Women International League for Peace
& Freedom (WILPF)
143 DeForest Rd.
Toronto,  ON  M6S 1J7
Tel./Fax:  (416) 760-8200
E-mail:  bruna@web.net

Ms. Freda L. PALTIEL

International Council of Women
Consultant Heath & Social Policy
20 Driveway #204
Ottawa, ON  K2P 1C8
Tel:  (613) 234-9167, Fax:  (613) 234-6433

Ms. Judith RAMIREZ
Immigration and Refugee Board
c/o 68 Montrose Avenue
Toronto, Ontario M6J 2T7

Ms. Karen L. SEPERS
Co-ordinator, Advancement of Women
Bahai Community of Canada
7200 Leslie Street
Thornhill, ON  L3T 6L8
Tel:  (905) 889-8168, Fax:  (905) 889-8184
E-mail:  karens@bahai.ca

Ms. Susanne TAMAS 
Bahai Community of Canada - Ottawa
Box 1358
Almonte, ON K0A 1A0
Tel:  (613) 256-6766, Fax: (613) 256-6768
E-mail:  bccottawa@1can.net

Mr. Bjorn TEIR
Personal Assistant to the UN Special
  for Human Rights in former
Yugoslavia, Mrs. Rehn
Ministry for Foreign Affairs
P.O. Box 176
00161 Helsinki, Finland 
Tel:  +358-9-7341-51, Fax:  +358-9-7341-5653
E-mail: bjorn.teir@formin.fi

Ms. Wendy A. YOUNG 
Women's Commission for Refugee Women
& Children
1300 Field Rd.
Shepherdstown, WV 25443, USA
Tel:  (304) 876-1320, Fax:  (304) 876-2269
E-mail:  wyoung@intrepid.net

                                ANNEX II

                           LIST OF DOCUMENTS

Background paper

EGM/GBP/1997/BP.1 Gender-based persecution in situations of armed conflict
                  Background paper prepared by the Division for the
                  Advancement of Women

Papers from the experts

EGM/GBP/1997/EP.1 Field experience wih respect to gender-based persecution
                  in armed conflict
                  Prepared by Ms. Mary Balikungeri
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.2 Gender issues in the International Criminal Tribunal for
                  Prepared by Judge Navanethem Pillay
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.3 The Ad Hoc Tribunals' Response to Gender Based Crimes
                  Prepared by Ms. Patricia Viseur-Sellers
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.4 Some Views on Women in Armed Conflict, Based on Field
                  Visits and Personal Experience
                  Prepared by Ms. Elisabeth Rehn
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.5 Gender-based Persecution - the Legal Framework
                  Prepared by Ms. Christine Chinkin
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.6 Women in Armed Conflict
                  Prepared by Ms. Hina Jilani
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.8 Dignity in Dark Tall Women - the War in Sudan
                  Prepared by Ms. Asma Abdel Halim
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.9 Gender-based Persecution in Armed Conflict Focus Refugee
                  and Internally Displaced Women
                  Prepared by Ms. Audrey Macklin
EGM/GBP/1997/EP.10Clinical Considerations in Gender-based Persecution 
                  Prepared by Ms. Gill Hinshelwood 

Observers' Papers

EGM/GBP/1997/OP.1 Statement by the Delegation of the Holy See presented by
                  Ms. Susan Scorsone
EGM/GBP/1997/OP.2 Statement of the Inter-American Commission of Women,
                  Organization of American States presented by Ms. Araceley
                  Conde de Paiz, Inter-American Commission of Women 
EGM/GBP/1997/OP.3 Statement of the Economic Commission for Africa presented
                  by Ms. Souad Adbennebi
EGM/GBP/1997/OP.4 Statement of the Gender Caucus of the ICC Preparatory
                  Committees presented by Ms. Donna Axel

                                  ANNEX III

                        Agenda and Programme of Work

             Expert Group Meeting on Gender-based Persecution

Saturday, 8 November 1997

           8:00 - 10:00 p.m.Registration of Participants

Sunday, 9 November

           8:30 a.m.        Registration of Participants

           9:30 a.m.        Opening of the meeting and opening statements:
                            - Division for the Advancement of Women
                            - Centre for Refugee Studies
                            Election of Officers
                            Adoption of Programme of Work

           10:30 a.m.       Presentation of background paper by the
                            Division for 
                            the Advancement of Women

           11:00 a.m.       Break

           11:15 a.m.       Presentation of experts' papers
                            1.  Gender-based persecution - the legal
                            Ms. Christine Chinkin, London School of
                            Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom
                            2.  Dignity in dark tall women - the war in
                            Ms. Asma Abdel Halim, Equality Now, Sudan
                            3.  Gender issues in the proposed International
                            Court: Ms. Alda Facio, ILANUD, Costa Rica

           1:00 p.m.        Lunch

           2:30 p.m.        Presentation of experts' papers
                            4.  Clinical considerations in gender-based
                            Ms. Gill Hinshelwood, Medical Foundation for the
                            Care of Victims of Torture, London, United Kingdom
                            5.  Reflections on prosecution of crimes of
                            gender-based persecution: 
                            Mr. Bernard Muna, Deputy Prosecutor for the Ad
                            Hoc War Crimes Tribunal for Rwanda, Cameroon
                            6.  Some views on women in armed conflict, based
                            on field missions and personal experience: 
                            Ms. Elisabeth Rehn, UN Special Rapporteur on 
                            the Situation of Human Rights in Bosnia and
                            Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia
                            and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Finland
                            7.  Gender-based persecution in armed conflict:
                            focus on refugee and internally displaced women:
                            Ms. Audrey Macklin, Dalhousie Law School, Halifax,
           4:00 p.m.        Break

           4:15 p.m.        Presentation of experts' papers
                            8.  Field experience with respect to 
                            gender-based persecution in armed conflict: 
                            Ms. Mary Balikungeri, Church World Service and
                            Witness Rwanda Programme, Rwanda
                            9.  The Ad Hoc Tribunals' response to gender-
                            based crimes: 
                            Ms Patricia Viseur-Sellers, Legal Adviser for
                            Gender-related Crimes, ICTY, ICTR, The Hague, The
                            10.  Gender issues in the International Criminal
                            Tribunal for Rwanda, Judge Navanethem Pillay,
                            South Africa
                            11.  Women in armed conflict: Ms. Hina Jilani,
                            Advocate, Pakistan
                            Presentation of observers' papers

           6.30 pm          Break

Monday, 10 November

           9:30 a.m.        Formation of working groups             

           10.30 am         Working Groups

           1:00 p.m.        Lunch

           2:30 p.m.        Working Groups
           6:30 p.m.        Dinner

           8:00 p.m.        Working Groups

           9:30 p.m.        Break

Tuesday, 11 November

           9:30 a.m.        Welcome address by Professor Lorna Marsden,
                            of York University, Toronto
           10:00 a.m.       Working Groups

           1:00 p.m.        Lunch

           2:30 p.m.        Working Groups

           4:00 p.m.        Presentation of reports of working groups

           6:00 p.m.        Break

Wednesday, 12 November

           9:30 a.m.        Adoption of the report of the meeting

           11:00 a.m.       Break

           11:15 a.m.       Adoption of the report of the meeting

           12.30 p.m.       Closing session

           1:00  p.m.       End of meeting


1/    The Commission on Human Rights agreed to appoint a Special Rapporteur on
violence against women in resolution 1994/45.  The Special Rapporteur's
mandate was extended for afurther three years by the Commission on Human
Rights in resolution 1997/44.

2/    Preliminary report of the Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women
to the Commission on Human Rights, E/CN.4/1995/42, 22 November 1994, paras.

3/    A/Res/48/104, 20 December 1993.

4/    Platform for Action, para. 135.

5/    Platform for Action, paragraph 118.

6/    Gagovic and Others: the 'Foca'Indictment, IT-96-23-1, 26 June 1996

7/    Aydin v Turkey, European Court of Human Rights, September 1997; Mejia
Egocheaga and another v Peru, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, 1996.

8/    Guidelines on Women Refugee Claimants Fearing Gender-Related
Persecution, Issued by the Chairperson of the Canadian Immigration and Refugee
Board in March 1993 and revised and reissued in 1996;  Considerations for
Asylum Officers Adjudicaing Asylum Claims for Women issued by the United
States' Immigration and Naturalization Service in 1995; Guidelines on Gender
Issues for Decision-makers issued by the Australian Department of Immigration
and Multicultural Affairs in 1996.

9/    Platform for Action, para. 138

10/   EGM/PDCR/1996/Rep.1, 7 November 1996.

11/   Agreed Conclusions 1997/1.

12/   E/CN.4/1996/105 (1995).


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