New NATO Special Representative for Women, Peace and Security takes office
Ambassador Marriët Schuurman, a Dutch career diplomat, takes up today (Friday, 24 October) her functions as NATO Special Representative for Women, Peace and Security.
“I am delighted to take on this position and the challenging portfolio that comes with it”, Ambassador Schuurman said upon her arrival at NATO Headquarters. “I look forward to further strengthening our capabilities and to broaden our partnerships in order to take the Women, Peace and Security agenda forward.”
Ambassador Schuurman succeeds to Mari Skåre, a Norwegian diplomat, who had been in the job since its creation in September 2012. The position includes raising awareness of NATO’s policies and activities in the area of Women, Peace and Security, ensuring their coordination, and cooperating with the United Nations and other relevant organisations.
One of Ambassador Schuurman’s main priorities will be to facilitate the implementation of the Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security. The plan was endorsed by NATO Foreign Ministers in June 2014. It sets ambitious targets for NATO, Allies and partner nations to reduce barriers for the active and meaningful participation of women in matters of peace and security and for further mainstreaming a gender perspective into NATO-led operations, missions, as well as in training and exercises. It covers a period of two years ending in June 2016.