No Women, No Peace

18 October 2005

Picking up on Galia's concern that we aren't reaching the policymaker men in suits, I'd like to share an example of how the NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security, of which International Alert is a founding member, is working to implement 1325 at the UN level, what we are doing at UN Headquarters 5 years on and who will be taking part in our October Advocacy Program next week, on which I will be posting regular updates on this blog.

To mark the 5th anniversary of SCR 1325, the NGO Working Group on WPS will bring women leaders and peacemakers to United Nations Headquarters in New York from October 21-28, 2005. These women peacemakers will advise senior UN officials and government representatives on how to resolve conflicts in their countries and fully involve women in peace and security decision-making. On October 27 the Security Council will hold an Open Debate on the role of women in peacemaking and peacebuilding, at which some of the participants will be speaking. Others will be addressing Security Council Members directly on October 25th in an Arria Formula briefing.

To find out more about the NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security and the various events we have planned at UN Headquarters next week, please see the above website link.

The NGO Working Group in partnership with women peace advocates from around the world is calling on the Security Council and governments to: 
  1. Develop national policies to ensure women’s equal participation in peace and security decision-making
  2. Ensure women’s equal participation and integration of women’s concerns in the work of the Peacebuilding Commission 
  3. End impunity for gender-based violence and protect women’s human rights

The NGO Working Group will hold press conferences at the United Nations Press Briefing Room (S-226) on:
October 26th 3:00-3:45 pm (co-sponsored by UNIFEM)
October 27th 1:15-1:45 pm (co-sponsored by the Mission of Canada to the UN)

Featuring the NGO Working Group's October Advocacy Program participants: 

Hanna Edwar (Iraq) participated in and led two successful campaigns in Iraq: to repeal an Iraqi Governing Council order aimed at nullifying the Family Law; and to ensure a quota for women in decision-making positions. Ms. Edwar is the General Secretary of the Iraqi Al-Amal Association and founder of the Iraqi Women’s Network.
Sweeta Noori (Afghanistan), the Country Director for Women for Women International, was an assistant to the Chair of the Loya Jirga Commission in forming the interim administration of Afghanistan. She traveled with the delegation to Belgium for talks with donors and international community representatives.
Ohmar Khin (Burma) has worked for the last twenty years to ensure the increased participation of women in Burmese politics in the democratic movement. Ms. Khin is the Coordinator for the Peacebuilding and Reconciliation Program, Women's League of Burma.
Helene Dandi (Côte d’Ivoire) is one of 1000 women nominated for the 2005 Nobel Peace Prize. Ms. Dandi has worked in Burundi, Côte d’Ivoire and the Democratic Republic of Congo on refugee repatriation issues. She is the French Regional Adviser (West Africa) of the Network of African Women for Peace.
Goretti Ndacayisaba (Burundi), a founding member of Dushirehamwe (lets reconcile) a national women’s network for grass-root peacebuilding in Burundi, has worked for seven years as a national-level coordinator on a gender and conflict-transformation training and advocacy.
Margaretta Muñoz (Colombia) has worked extensively with vulnerable populations in Colombia, especially women and children displaced by the armed conflict in Bogota and Cartagena. As the Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom’s Colombia Project Coordinator she has worked to develop and promote women, peace and security advocacy tools.





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