United Nations: Security Council Adopts New Resolution on Women, Peace and Security
Monday, December 2, 2019 9:45 AM

At the recent Women, Peace and Security Open Debate, members of the UN Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 2493 (2019) on women’s human rights and participation in peace and political processes around the world. Resolution 2493 is the tenth Security Council resolution addressing the importance of including women in efforts to promote peace, security and stability, particularly in countries impacted by armed conflict. Prior to adoption of the resolution, several speakers and hundreds of civil society organizations called on the Security Council to fully implement “the WPS agenda” and recognize “the role women human rights defenders play in building peace and the need for dedicated protection in order for them to safely and effectively carry out their important work.” 

Advocates say the resolution represents “modest” progress on full recognition of women’s rights in the context of WPS and the Security Council. They noted “strong references to women’s ‘full, equal and meaningful’ participation”, as well as language supporting a “safe and enabling environment” for “civil society, women leaders, peace builders and politicians” and those who “protect and promote human rights”.  Many were disappointed that the resolution did not explicitly reference the role and protection of women’s human rights defenders, a controversial topic among Security Council members including Russia and China.

Resolution 2493 follows a report by the Secretary General on the implementation of thirty gender-based recommendations contained in a series of peace and security reviews completed in 2015. The report, based on an independent assessment (forthcoming) by UN Women, found that only two recommendations had been fully implemented and most recommendations were either not implemented or only partially implemented. The reported noted that the UN continues to face significant challenges in the full integration of women in peace-building processes and in the protection of women’s human rights in armed conflict and humanitarian crises. 

Compiled from: Analysis of the 2019 Women, Peace and Security Open Debate, NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security (November 6, 2019).