NATO Special Envoy for Women, Peace and Security visits Colombia
Clare Hutchinson, the NATO Secretary General’s Special Representative for Women, Peace and Security visited Colombia (25-26 April 2019) to participate in an international seminar on gender and territorial security. While in Bogota, Ms. Hutchinson also attended a number of high level meetings, including with the Colombian Vice Minister of Defence Ms Diana Abaunza Millares and the Head of the Colombian Army Gender Office, Lieutenant Colonel Claudia Martinez.
NATO reached a partnership agreement with Colombia in May 2017 making the country the Alliance’s first partner in South America. Ties between NATO and Colombia have grown since. Following high level staff talks at NATO Headquarters in November 2018, Colombia also recently hosted a NATO expert team at its demining training center which resulted in Columbia joining NATO’s network of Partnership Training and Education Centers.
In Colombia, Ms. Hutchinson presented NATO’s agenda on Women Peace and Security and emphasized the Alliance’s deep commitment to advancing it even further. NATO promotes the full participation of women in all aspects of security and defence and Ms Hutchinson underscored the correlation between gender equality and a country’s stability. NATO considers women’s empowerment and participation as imperative for achieving sustainable peace.
Ms. Hutchinson reaffirmed NATO’s commitment to support Colombia as the country starts to work on the implementation of the Women, Peace and Security agenda in the defence and security sectors. She also expressed hope that Colombia would associate itself with the revised NATO Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security and actively support its agenda.