High-level meeting on women in mediation

How can women’s meaningful participation in peace processes be increased? This and much more was discussed during a high-level meeting at the UN headquarters in New York the 11th of May, co-organized by the partner countries and operational partners of the Nordic Women Mediation Network. FBA is one of the partner organizations.

– Women’s meaningful participation in mediation and conflict prevention is much more than a gender issue, it is a matter of sustainable peace, said Børge Brende, Foreign Minister of Norway, in his introductory remarks at the high-level meeting.

The meeting was co-organized by Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark, together with the operational partners from the Nordic countries; FBA, CMI, NOREF, PRIO and UNU-GEST. It was hosted by the Permanent Mission of Finland to the UN.

More than 15 years after the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security, formal peace and mediation processes have lagged behind in effectively engaging and meaningfully involving women, whether as negotiators representing parties to a conflict or as members of the teams facilitating peace processes. But there is no lack of examples of women’s important contributions:

– In 2014, Professor Miriam Coronel-Ferrer became the first female chief negotiator to affix her signature on a comprehensive peace deal involving two negotiating parties. And the Philippines was the first Asian country to implement a national action plan for 1325, said Ambassador Lourdes Ortiz Yparraguirre, Permanent Representative of the Philippines to the UN.

– We have discussed these issues for more than 15 years, it is time to take the next step, said Elisabeth Rehn, Finnish Minister of State and one of the members of the Nordic Women Mediation Network (NWMN).

Staffan de Mistura, the UN envoy for Syria, gave a video greeting during the meeting together with Rim Turkmani, member of the Syrian Women’s Advisory Board. Sweden is currently supporting a number of women in the Syrian peace talks, and the Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström shared some of the words of advice she has given:

– Make sure you have a central role in the process, and if it is not given to you, take it. Focus on the substantial issues, demand information about the process, identify who is important, and stay united – show solidarity.

The importance of discussing men’s role was highlighted by a number of participants, including the NWMN members Greta Gunnarsdottir, Iceland’s Ambassador for Human Rights, and Karin Landgren, former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General to Liberia.

Foreign Minister of Iceland Lilja Alfredsdottir made the closing remarks of the well-attended meeting:

– We have a long way to go, but I find this meeting very enlightening. The Nordic Women Mediation Network aims to increase the number of women in peace processes, and we are now bringing a number of qualified women to the forefront.

Read more

FBA forms network of women peace mediators

Prominent women mediators gathered in Stockholm

MORE FROM HOME

Strengthening Africa’s regional forces for peace

Millions of people in sub-Saharan Africa are displaced due to war. FBA is now establishing long-term collaborative relationships with various regional organizations in order to contribute to a peaceful development on the continent. At the forefront is the cooperation with ECOWAS, a community of 15 countries in West Africa, to which FBA offers training for key personnel.

2017-11-10 13:23

Read our publications

Image description

Responsive and Responsible: Politically Smart Rule of Law Reform in Conflict and Fragile States

There is a long-standing recognition that rule of law is an essential element in achieving sustainable peace and development. In recent years it has gained even more prominence in policy discourse and as a core ingredient of broad-based international commitments, with the Sustainable Development Goals and in particular Goal 16 as a clear indicator for where we are headed. Yet, what has been lacking in rule of law reform, or at least it has been only marginally represented, is a political approach to address the underlying causes of problems and obstacles to rule of law.

Documents
Attributes
Author:
Richard Sannerholm, Shane Quinn and Andrea Rabus
Year:
2016

IN THE FIELD

THE FBA BLOG

  • Posted by Sabrina Karim

    Liberia after Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

    On November 8 2005, Liberians elected Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to be the first female president of an African country. She made history that day and she oversaw fourteen years of peace in a country that had experienced two decades of devastating armed conflict. In 2011, she was re-elected and won the Nobel Peace Prize. Her fame and legacy has brought widespread international attention onto Liberia.

    On October 10, 2017, Liberians will go to the polls for the ... Read entire post »

    2017-10-06 15:28
  • Posted by Maja Jakobsson

    Strengthening forces for peace through experience-sharing

    The security situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated as of late, with the highest number of conflict-related civilian casualties in 2016 since 2009. The efforts for a formal and sustainable peace process are insufficient and face numerous obstacles. Violent battles between government and Taliban forces have resulted in new districts falling under Taliban power. Attacks by other groups, loyal to the Islamic State, are increasing in numbers.

    Despite this, there are still strong forces for peace in Afghanistan. ... Read entire post »

    2017-09-21 16:18
  • Posted by Ludmila Ceban

    Technical problems, political fixes: assessing rule of law in local governance in Ukraine

    I take public sector reform challenges in the post-Soviet space quite personally, with many first-hand Kafkaesque experiences from growing up in the ‘east’. So when the opportunity came about to work for the FBA on improving service delivery from a rights-based perspective in Ukraine, I struggled to think of alternatives to the complicated procedures people often have to go through when dealing with public authorities. It made me wonder whether the system can ever truly change.

    One ... Read entire post »

    2017-09-12 12:48
Photo

Gabriela Elroy

Gabriela is expert on women, peace and security

More about our experts

Upcoming courses

Twitter