Last month, world leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Sustainable Development Goal 5 aims to “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”.
Achieving Goal 5 is integral to the success of the entire sustainable development agenda.
We cannot achieve equitable sustainable development if we do not involve and respect half the world’s population.
We need a 50:50 Planet by 2030.
Just prior to adopting the 2030 Agenda, world leaders and high-level government representatives meeting here in New York signalled their personal responsibility for this objective.
Yesterday, the Security Council’s annual meeting on women, peace and security was presided over for the first time by a head of government, His Excellency Mr. Mariano Rajoy, the Prime Minister of Spain.
Gender equality and women’s empowerment are progressively getting the global attention that they deserve.
Since I became Secretary-General, the Security Council has adopted several resolutions on women, peace and security.
I am personally committed to implementing these resolutions.
I have highlighted women’s leadership in peacebuilding as a priority.
And I have appointed an unprecedented number of women leaders in the United Nations.
These include five female Special Representatives in peacekeeping missions in Haiti, Côte d'Ivoire, Western Sahara, South Sudan and Cyprus.
I have also appointed the first-ever female Force Commander -- Major General Kristin Lund -- in Cyprus.
I have asked for 15 per cent of all peacebuilding funds to be devoted to advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment.
We must also expand this target to our efforts to counter emerging peace and security threats, in particular violent extremism.
With armed extremist groups placing the subordination of women at the top of their agenda, we must put women’s leadership and the protection of women’s rights at the top of ours.
I will spare no effort to end violence against women and girls and the abuse of their rights.
This includes the disgrace of sexual exploitation and abuse by our own peacekeepers.
I am proud to call myself a HeForShe -- a male champion of gender equality.
Men must take responsibility for ensuring that women can participate fully and equally throughout society.
This includes a place at the peace table.
At the tenth anniversary of the adoption of resolution 1325, I suggested that the Council convene a ministerial-level review every five years to assess progress, renew commitments and address obstacles.
Five years ago, there was a disturbing lack of progress.
We have made some advances since then, but we must do much more, and we must do it faster.
It is essential to ensure that the UN is fit for purpose when it comes to women, peace and security.
We must be a model for all actors to emulate.
We have conducted three major reviews of international peace and security this year.
We have examined United Nations peace operations, our peacebuilding architecture, and women, peace and security.
I will convene my senior leadership before the end of the year to examine the gender implications of these reviews and chart the way forward.
In preparation for yesterday’s high-level review, I commissioned an independent expert’s assessment.
The Global Study on the implementation of resolution 1325 being launched today is an important part of the United Nations agenda for change.
I thank the lead author, Ms. Radhika Coomaraswamy, the high-level advisory group, UN Women and other UN entities, Member States and civil society for their important contributions.
I hope this Global Study can help us implement existing commitments and generate new momentum for empowering women in keeping and building peace.
Let us work together to reap the dividends of gender equality for peace and development.