SUDANESE WOMEN MEET WITH UN TOP LEADERSHIP TO VOICE THEIR CONCERNS ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION 1325 ON WOMEN PEACE AND SECURITY
10 June 2010 - Sudanese women held earlier today meetings with top United Nations leaders in the country to voice their concerns and provide recommendations to accelerate the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women Peace and Security. The meeting, which was held at the UNMIS headquarters in Khartoum, was one of more than twenty similar events all over the world this week in various locations hosting UN peacekeeping and political missions. The day brought together Sudanese women from a broad range of civil society organisations from Southern Sudan, Darfur, Eastern Sudan, the Nuba Mountains, the Blue Nile State and Khartoum. The women expressed concern that despite the passing of the Resolution, ten years later much remains to be done. They offered comprehensive and holistic recommendations on women’s role in conflict prevention and resolution, covering topics as diverse as alternative fuels and de-mining activities, and strongly demanding the UN to advocate with them for a minimum of 30 percent female participation at all levels of decision-making, from peace negotiations to DDR commissions. They further called for a national mechanism for the implementation of SCR 1325.
In responding UNMIS Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Jasbir Singh Lidder, together with Ms. Yegerawork Angagaw, Senior Gender Adviser in representation of the UNAMID Joint Special Representative Ibrahim Gambari emphasized the commitment of both missions and their support to ensuring the realization of this landmark Resolution, in collaboration with all stakeholders, from government partners to civil society.
In addition, Ms. Grace Okonji, Senior Gender Adviser, UNDP reiterated the commitment of UNDP in supporting the women of Sudan.
They were joined by Ms. Ines Alberdi, Executive Director of UNIFEM, in her first visit to Sudan, who took the opportunity to applaud the proposals presented by the Sudanese women. Ms. Alberdi highlighted three implementation gaps –the scarcity of women in peace negotiations, the continued use of sexual violence as a tactic of war, and the persistent shortfall in financing for women, peace and security concerns- and noted that all three affect Sudan.
The Open Day was the culmination of a series of state, regional and national-level consultations held throughout the various regions in Sudan to bring together Sudanese women to identify gaps as well as provide recommendations on the road ahead to make Resolution 1325 a reality. The preparatory consultations and Open Day meetings were supported by UNMIS, UNAMID, UNIFEM and United Nations Development Programme who provided funding, technical and logistical support to the Sudanese women. The consultations, along with outcome of Open Days taking place globally, will feed into the discussions of the UN Security Council in October on the occasion of this watershed Resolution.
Security Council Resolution 1325, a landmark resolution was passed on 31st October 2000 and calls on all actors, including governments and the UN to take concrete actions to ensure the participation of women in peace processes and to improve the protection of women in conflict and post-conflict situations. The Resolution covers key, interrelated areas which include; Calls for an increased representation of women at all decision-making levels- nationally, regionally and internationally in the prevention, management and resolution of conflict and peace processes; calls on all actors involved, when negotiating and implementing peace agreements to adopt a gender perspective into peacekeeping. It also underlines the need for better protection of women from gender-based violence, particularly rape and other forms of sexual abuse, and all other forms of violence in situations of armed conflict.