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Security Council pledges steps to involve more women in peacemaking

Security Council pledges steps to involve more women in peacemaking

Two years after the United Nations Security Council adopted a landmark resolution aimed at increasing the role of women in peacemaking, the 15-member body today outlined further steps to achieve that end.

Integrating gender perspectives into the mandates of all peacekeeping operations was one of the measures described in a statement read at a formal meeting by the Council President, Ambassador Martin Belinga-Eboutou of Cameroon. “The Council also requests the Secretary-General to provide systematic training of all staff in peacekeeping operations on gender perspectives, and to integrate gender perspectives into all standard operating procedures, manuals and other guidance materials for peacekeeping operations,” he said.

Voicing concern about the slow progress in the appointment of women as special representatives and envoys of the Secretary-General, the Council urged him to work toward gender balance in that area. States were asked to continue providing Mr. Annan with suitable candidates.

Pointing to other problems, the President said the Council “deplores the continuing occurrence of sexual exploitation, including trafficking, of women and girls in the context of peacekeeping operations and humanitarian activities, and calls for the further development and full implementation of codes of conduct and of disciplinary procedures” in response. All concerned, he added, must work to investigate and prosecute alleged cases of misconduct.

The Council also condemned all human rights violations against women and girls in situations of armed conflict, and the use of sexual violence “including as a strategic and tactical weapon of war,” Ambassador Belinga-Eboutou said.

The statement called for more efforts to ensure gender mainstreaming in peacekeeping operations and post-conflict reconstruction, and encouraged the establishment of regular contacts with local women’s groups and networks in order to take advantage of their knowledge and experience concerning the gender dimensions of conflict.