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UN Security Council Says Women Essential to Peacekeeping

The UN Security Council met Monday to discuss Security Council Resolution 1325 (“Women and Peace and Security”) as part of a greater dialogue on women and peacemaking. The Council urged Member States to increase physical security, socio-economic conditions, education, access to health services, and justice for female citizens.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon opened the debate by highlighting the need to “[empower] women and girls in order that they can play their rightful role in conflict prevention and peace building….a cessation of conflict should not result in the marginalization of women and girls, nor their relegation to stereotypical roles.” He also emphasized that women will reprioritize and bring gender issues to the forefront; all while juggling the political divide effectively.

Security Council Resolution 1325 (see PDF) was passed unanimously on October 31, 2000. It was the first resolution passed by the Council that specifically addressed the effects of war on women as well as their contributions to peacemaking and development. The resolution reconfirms that women and children are those most adversely affected by armed conflict, including those living as refugees and internally displaced persons. It also calls for special measures to be taken to protect women and girls from gender-based violence and other forms of violence in situations of armed conflict.

Sources:

UN News Centre 10/5/09; Secretary General Office of the Spokesperson Website 10/5/09; Feminist Daily News 11/10/00