I have the honor to make the following remarks on behalf of the European Union.
– At the 2005 World Summit, world leaders reaffirmed the important role of women in peacebuilding and called for the full and effective implementation of the Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women and Peace and Security. The European Union calls for urgent action to implement this agreement, including by systematic attention and resources to advancing gender equality within transitional recovery, reintegration and reconstruction efforts.
– Womens participation in decision making in countries emerging from conflict is key. However, women often face obstacles to their effective participation. Policies and progressive legislation promoted by women have limited impact on the ground due to lack of resources or limitations of state structures. There is urgent need to move beyond the sheer number of women present, to questions of capacity to implement effective institutional reforms for gender equality.
– Efforts in countries emerging from conflict can offer opportunities to redress gender inequities and injustices of the past, and sett precedents for the future. Gender equality can bring new degrees of democratic inclusiveness, social recovery, as well as faster and more durable economic growth. These opportunities must be enhanced by the international community.
– There are significant gaps in the international support provided to countries emerging from conflict with regards to the empowerment of women. These situations require a coherent and predictable international response to a wide range of issues such as addressing sexual and gender based violence, and quotas and representation of women in decision-making. In this regard, the EU urges the United Nations development system to step up their efforts to build the necessary capacity and to effectively integrate a gender perspective into their approach to early recovery, transition and reintegration.
– There has been significant normative progress in this field over the past few years. Now is the time for action. How can we translate the normative progress made with strong and coherent action in response to the needs of women in the countries emerging from conflict?