NATO and partners step up work on Women, Peace and Security
NATO and its partners from the Euro-Atlantic Council (EAPC) on Tuesday (13 May 2014) released a revised policy on Women, Peace and Security, which aims to step up the implementation of gender-related measures in NATO civilian and military structures, as well as in NATO-led operations and missions. “A more focused, inclusive and forward-leaning approach is what we need to take our efforts forward. The policy provides us with the necessary tools to further enhance the integration of a gender perspective, notably in the fields of crisis management, cooperative security and NATO-led operations,” said Mari Skaare, NATO’s Secretary General’s Special Representative for Women, Peace and Security.
The revised policy, endorsed by NATO and its EAPC partners on 1 April 2014, builds on the Alliance’s experience in enforcing United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 and its related resolutions.
It opens the way for more practical cooperation with NATO’s broad partnership network. For the first time, Afghanistan, Australia, Japan, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates participated actively in the development of the policy. New Zealand also associated itself with this effort. “NATO’s approach toward gender issues is entirely consistent with Japan’s approach,” said Mitsuo Sakaba, Japanese Ambassador to Belgium. “Mainstreaming Women, Peace and Security is one of the priority areas of practical cooperation between Japan and NATO. And we are looking forward to further enhancing cooperation with NATO in this field”.
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen stressed the importance of the policy in a recent address to students at Georgetown University. “The adoption of the revised policy on 1325 is the testament of the progress we have made to ensure that women can assume their rightful place in matters of peace and security,” he said.
Since the first adoption of the NATO-EAPC Policy on Women, Peace and Security in 2007, significant progress has been made to make the gender perspective an integral part of NATO’s institutions and day-to-day work.
“The newly adopted guidance on the implementation of USNCR 1325 within NATO is an important benchmark of the Alliance’s commitment towards gender issues and a significant achievement on the path of defining the agenda of future NATO”, Gabriele Checchia, Italian Ambassador to NATO, said.
The revised Policy highlights the importance of participation of women in conflict prevention, management and resolution as well as in post-conflict efforts and cooperation. It also addresses the question of women’s protection needs in time of conflict and how to prevent, recognize and respond to conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence. It reflects the adoption, in 2013, of UN Security Council Resolution 2106 on sexual violence in conflict and will constitute a key area of focus in the run-up to the NATO Wales Summit on 4-5 September 2014. Other priority areas includes gender training and gender adviser capacity-building and the further integration of the gender perspective in NATO’s operational planning, assessment and reporting mechanisms. “The Alliance has come a long way, but the task is not yet complete. The NATO Summit in September 2014 will indeed provide an opportunity to build on and further strengthen NATO’s ongoing policy”, Fatih Ceylan, Turkish Ambassador to NATO, said.
An Action Plan is currently under development to ensure that the Policy translates in concrete measures and actions.