U.N. Security Council Urges Increased Effort to Protect Women
Tuesday, November 2, 2004 11:05 AM

After finishing a full day of debate on women, peace and security, the Security Council called on the U.N. to put forth a comprehensive effort to end violence against women and girls in war. The Security Council is also urging the U.N. to give women a stronger voice and position during the post-conflict peace processes.

 The Council released a presidential statement asking Secretary-General Kofi Annan to outline a plan by October 2005 showing how the U.N. can achieve these goals. Ambassador Emyr Jones Parry of the United Kingdom said the plan of action would include a timetable for implementing specific goals, such as the elimination of gender-based violence and an increase in women’s participation in peace-keeping operations. The statement also urged the Secretary-General to identify female candidates for positions in peacekeeping, conflict prevention, and humanitarian operations; called for the elimination of impunity for perpetrators of violence against women and girls in war; recommended specific training for all staff involved in conflict or post-conflict operations in order to increase recognition and response to gender-based violence; and emphasized the need for support programs for victims of gender-based violence.

One of the purposes of the debate was to measure progress made since the Council adopted a resolution in 2000 decrying gender-based violence, and called for a reorganization in the planning of peace and security operations in order to ensure that women’s perspectives were always included. The Executive Director of the U.N. Population Fund has described international response as ‘completely inadequate’ and said that most of the progress made since 2000 has been in the creation of policies and guidelines—and not on the ground where girls and women continue to face violence. The Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations said that despite the challenges still being faced, the U.N. has been working harder since 2000 to include the needs and perspectives of women in its operations.

Compiled from: “Security Council urges stepped-up efforts to protect women from violence in war,” UN News Centre, 28 October 2004.

Security Council Press Release SC/8230, 28 October 2004.