среда, 25 июня 2014 г.

ON WOMEN, PEACE AND SECURITY


Nino Lagvilava 

UN Security Council Resolution 1325 was passed unanimously on 31 October 2000. Resolution (S/RES/1325) is the first resolution ever passed by the Security Council that specifically addresses the impact of war on women, and women's contributions to conflict resolution and sustainable peace.

Background
The public gallery of the Security Council was filled with women on October 24, 2000. There was a lot of clapping that day and the word "historic" was used over and over again, and it was justified.
At last, after 55 years of the United Nations working to "end the scourge of war", a women's perspective on war and peace became visible in the Security Council under the Namibian Presidency. The suffering of women in war, the under-valued and under-utilized conflict prevention and peace building work of women and the leadership they show in rebuilding war-torn societies were all articulated in forty-one speeches in the Security Council chamber. The day before, Council members benefited from the expertise of NGOs in an Arria Formula meeting wherein women from Sierra Leone, Guatemala, Somalia and Tanzania spoke.
As a result, on October 31, 2000, Security Council Resolution 1325 was unanimously passed. This resolution calls for: the participation of women in decision-making and peace processes; gender perspectives and training in peacekeeping; the protection of women; and gender mainstreaming in United Nations reporting systems and programmatic implementation mechanisms. This resolution is an important tool in shifting the UN system from words to action.

National Action Plans
Implementing the Women, Peace and Security agenda is the responsibility of national governments as well as the UN. Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) contains specific text regarding national implementation, particularly in regard to women's participation in decision-making and peace processes, the protection of women and girls and gender training. Noting slow implementation progress at the national level, in 2004 the Security Council called on Member States to implement resolution 1325 (2000), including through the development of National Action Plans (NAPs) or other national level strategies .
National Action Plans offer a tool for governments to articulate priorities and coordinate the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1325 at national level. NAPs serve as a guiding national policy document that is able to capture the diverse set of government bodies and stakeholders tasked with security, foreign policy, development and gender equality.
NAPs have the potential to be effective tools for realizing the implementation of the Women, Peace and Security agenda because they can mobilize different government branches and are often the result of the combined efforts of government and civil society. A NAP can facilitate non-duplicative interdepartmental coordination and accelerate gender mainstreaming and Security Council Resolution 1325 implementation across government.

International Cooperation on Action Plans
Countries can also choose to collaborate on National Action Plans through a process called cross-learning, or twinning. More commonly, intergovernmental organizations develop Regional Action Plans. International and bi-lateral organizations also often offer funding and technical support or are directly involved in the development and implementation of NAPs.

Civil Societies Role in National Implementation
National governments are responsible for implementing UN resolutions, while Civil Society holds government accountable by monitoring this implementation. Civil society often plays an important role in the development phase of a NAP, through consultations, submission processes and offering expertise to governments. Civil society will also often have a continuing oversight and monitoring role, being allocated a place in implementation bodies or through shadow reporting functions. The level of civil society involvement varies between nations, however comprehensive NAPs have extensive civil society involvement of civil society in common.
Outside formal processes, Civil Society also typically has an integral role in lobbying for a NAP, localizing implementation of the Women, Peace and Security agenda, through education, training, promotion, advocacy and direct service delivery.
NAPs have the potential of being an effective tool for the implementation of the spirit of UNSCR 1325 only if a comprehensive process is undertaken and as long as it is recognized as a means to an end rather than an end in and of themselves. It is of vital importance that civil society and women’s organizations participate in process of developing a NAP as this serves to promote awareness about the role of gender equality not only to nations in conflict, but also to peaceful nations.

Human Rights and Women's Rights
Human rights are understood as "inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being." Human rights are thus conceived as universal (applicable everywhere) and egalitarian (the same for everyone).
Women's rights are entitlements to the same rights and freedoms men should enjoy;the idea is that women should have equal rights with men.
 Issues commonly associated with notions of women's rights include, though are not limited to the right: to bodily integrity and autonomy; to vote (suffrage); to hold public office; to work; to fair wages or equal pay; to own property, to education; to serve in the military or be conscripted; to enter into legal contracts; and to have marital, parental and religious rights.

Background History to HRs
The modern concept of HRs can be traced to Renaissance Europe and the Protestant Reformation, alongside the disappearance of the feudal authoritarianism and religious conservatism that dominated the Middle ages.
Starting in the late 18th century, rights, as a concept and claim, gained increasing political, social and philosophical importance in Europe. Movements emerged which demanded freedom of religion, abolition of slavery, rights for women, rights for those who did not own property and rights to universal suffrage.
In the late 18th century the question of women's rights also became central to European political debates and the women started demanding women’s rights promotion. It origins are attributed to 18th century France and Britain. In October, 1789 6000 Parisian women marched to Versailles to request bread to Louis XVI. In 1791 the French playwright and political activist Olympe de Gouges published the Declaration of the Rights of Women and the Female Citizen, modeled on the Declaration of the Rights of Men and of the Citizen of 1789. The Declaration was ironic in formulation and exposes the failure of the French Revolution devoted to equality. It states that: “This revolution will only take effect when all women become fully aware of their deplorable condition, and of the rights they have lost in society”. In 1840 women in America started a campaign against slavery.
Women’s suffrage is the right of women to vote on the same term as men and to run for office. In Britain in 1865 Women submitted petition to Common Chamber to give an active votes rights to women.19th century movement for women's rights spread through Britain and its colonies, the United States and northern Europe. New Zealand was the first self-governing nation country to give women the right to vote on a national level in 1893. After 1893 women's suffrage quickly became a central element in New Zealand's image as a progressive 'social laboratory' of the South Pacific. In New Zealand too, women still had a long way to go to achieve political equality..Women would not gain the right to stand for Parliament until 1919, and the first female MP (Elizabeth McCombs) was not elected until 1933 - 40 years after the introduction of women's suffrage.Australia gave women the right to vote in 1902. A number of Nordic countries gave women the right to vote in early 20th century: Finland (1906), Norway(1913), Denmark(1915). With the end of the First World War many other countries followed – the Netherlands (1917), Austria, Canada, USSR, Poland, and Sweden (1918), Germany and Luxembourg, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia (1919), United States (1920).Spain gave women the right to vote in 1931, France in 1944, Belgium, Italy, Romania and Yugoslavia in 1945; Iran gave women the rights to vote in 1963; Switzerland gave women the right to vote in 1971, and Liechtenstein in 1984.
In the subsequent decades women's rights again became an important issue in the English speaking world. By the 1960s the movement was called "feminism" or "women's liberation." Reformers wanted the same pay as men, equal rights in law, and the freedom to plan their families or not have children at all. Their efforts were met with mixed results.

Women’s Civil Society Movement
A civil society is a public space between the state, the market and the ordinary household, in which people can debate and tackle action. Human rights organizations have been said to ""translate complex international issues into activities to be undertaken by concerned citizens in their own community". Human rights organizations frequently engage in lobbying and advocacy in an effort to convince the United Nations, supranational bodies and national governments to adopt their policies on human rights. Many human-rights organizations have observer status at the various UN bodies tasked with protecting human rights.
All major international documents adopted by UN are result of civil society activists’ and international women’s movement. Started in the 1920s and 1930s, women’s international organizations, still young though, had interesting collaboration with the first intergovernmental peace organization, the League of Nations. After the WWI, when in 1919 the League of Nations and ILO were created, women founded the Inter-Allied Suffrage Conference (IASC), calling for the promotion of universal suffrage in Member States, abolishing trafficking in women and children, creation of an international education and health bureau and the control and reduction of armaments. The League of Nations established a body for international legal protection of the human rights of particular minority groups, this was the start of the dialogue between international non-governmental. INGOs were estimated to represent 45 million women, but “a leadership cohort of middle and upper-class British, Scandinavian and American women who met on a regular basis in London or Geneva coordinated women’s international work.”Newly-established women’s international organizations arranged the first parallel NGO conference to coincide with an inter-governmental conference. The aim of the parallel conference was to make women’s voices heard in governmental discussions. However, it was not until 25 years later, at the founding of the UN, that some of the proposals made in 1919 by women reached the ears of the governments. Women’s early proposals included international collaboration in fields such as education and health care; but the world had to wait until 1946 to see the UN establish the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to address these issues. Women also had clear demands regarding disarmament and arms control—issues that were to become fundamental elements of the UN’s work from the outset.In recent decades, parallel NGO conferences have become a permanent feature in connection with UN world conferences and gather thousands of people from around the world to monitor the inter-governmental events. These people’s fora create massive publicity for issues that women activists from around the world want to bring to the public’s attention.  All results on women’s issues  at UN as well as national level are achieved  with strongest participation and pressure of women’s civil society movement at all levels. Four UN World conferences on Women have been organized to advance women’s issues and gender equality.

The UN and International Instruments on Women’s Rights
Many of the basic ideas that animated the HR movement developed in the aftermath of the WWI and WWII. The atrocities of WWI and WWII including the Holocaust, culminated in creation of United Nations and adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by UN General Assembly in 1948. UN Charter of 1945 and Universal Declaration of Human Rights both enshrined "the equal rights of men and women", and addressed both the equality and equity issues
UN Charter of 1945
UN support for the rights of women began with the Organization's founding Charter :Article 1:“To achieve international co-operation … in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion.”
Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 was the first international document that recognized equal rights for men and women: Article 2: “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights” and that “everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status’’.

Women’s Human Rights in Human Rights Pacts
UN subsequently elaborated on HR in details in its two following conventions, so called HR Pacts which together with the UDHR made up the Bill of Rights - International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (Civil Pact) of 1966 (entered into force in 1976) and International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Social Pact) of 1966 (entered into force in 1976). Provisions for gender equality in the Human Rights Pacts: Art.2. Civil Pact/Social pact: (…) guarantee that the rights enunciated in the present Covenants will be exercised without discrimination of any kind as to race, colour, sex, (…) or social origin; Art.3. Civil Pact/Social Pact: Equal rights of men and women to exercise all rights set forth in the present Covenants; Art.7. Social Pact: Right to equal remuneration for work of equal value and guarantee of conditions of work not inferior to those enjoyed by men; Art.10. Social Pact: Protection accorded to mothers before and after childbirth; Art.23. Civil Pact: Equal rights and responsibilities of spouses as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution; Art.23. Civil Pact: (…) guarantee to all persons equal and effective legal protection against discrimination on any ground such as race, colour, sex, (…).
Though universal conventions pioneered the protection of human rights of women, however the concept and application of these conventions were essentially male centered and although these instruments reflected the growing sophistication of the UN system with regard to the protection and promotion of women's human rights, the approach they reflected was fragmentary, as they failed to deal with discrimination against women in a comprehensive way. In addition, there was concern that the general human rights regime was not, in fact, working as well as it might to protect and promote the rights of women.

In recognition of the serious impact that armed conflict has on women and children, the United Nations Security Council adopted Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (SCR 1325) on 31 October 2000. It calls on Member States and all actors in a conflict to protect women’s rights, to take account of their specific needs in conflict and post-conflict situations and to involve them in the entire process of re-establishing peace and stability through their participation in peacemaking, peacekeeping and peace-building efforts. It is the first Security Council Resolution to link women’s experiences of conflict to the maintenance of international peace and security.. SCR 1325 recognizes that men and women experience security differently and that to build sustainable peace women need to be fully involved. After 2000 five more UNSC resolutions were adopted on Women, Peace and Security urging Member States to address the issue of furthering peace and security for women and girls and calling for representation of women at all levels of decision-making to prevent, manage and resolve conflict.

UN mechanisms and structures to implement Women’s Human Rights
There are number of mechanisms and structures at UN to implement Women’s Human Rights. Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) established in 1946 at the first meeting of ECOSOC, was one of the first two "Functional Commissions" set up along with UN Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR)-Charter-Based body). CSW prepares recommendations and reports to the Council on promoting women's rights in political, economic, civil, social and educational fields. The CSW is one of the commissions of the UN that do not limit participation to states only. NGOs are also allowed to participate in sessions of the CSW, attending caucuses and panels and organizing their own parallel events through the NGO Committee on the Status of Women.
Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW Committee) is the body of 23 independent experts that monitors implementation of the CEDAW Convention and its optional protocol. State parties are obliged to submit regular reports to the Committee on how the rights of the Convention are implemented. The Committee considers each State party report and addresses its concerns and recommendations to the State party. General recommendations are directed to States and concern articles or themes in the Conventions.

State reports vs shadow reports prepared by NGOs
UN set up a number of treaty-based bodies, comprising committees of independent experts who monitor compliance with human rights standards and norms flowing from the core international human rights treaties, such as The Human Rights Committee promotes participation with the standards of the ICCPR, The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights monitors the ICESCR ;The Committee Against Torture ;The Committee on the Rights of the Child; The Committee on Migrant Workers ;The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities ; The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
The new UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women was created on 2 July 2010 and is responsible for providing substantive support to the Commission in all aspects of its work. UN Women is also responsible for facilitating the participation of civil society representatives in the Commission’s annual session, as well as for the coordination of parallel events held at the United Nations during the sessions. Four of the world body’s agencies and offices merged: the UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), the Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW), the Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues, and the UN International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (UN-INSTRAW).

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