|Statement by Ambassador Wang Min at the Security Council Open Debate on Women and peace and security|
I would like to thank Deputy Secretary-General Eliasson for attending today’s meeting and for his statement. I have listened carefully to the briefings by Ms. Bachelet, Executive Director of UN-Women; Under-Secretary- General for Peacekeeping Operations Ladsous; and Ms. Diop, President of Femmes Africa Solidarité.
Women are a great force in the creation of human civilization. The promotion of gender equality and the protection of women’s rights have a direct bearing not only on women’s vital concerns but also on world peace and development. Although women tend to be victims in conflict and post-conflict situations, they are also important partners in the prevention and mediation of conflicts and in post-conflict reconstruction.
In considering women and peace and security, it is important that the Council not only focus on the protection of women’s security and safeguarding their rights in conflict and post-conflict situations, but also recognize the unique role played by women in peace processes and seek ways to bring them onboard in advancing global peace and security.
By adopting resolution 1325 (2000), the Council laid the foundations for the international community to establish cooperation in the field of women and peace and security. In recent years, thanks to joint efforts by Member States, international organizations such as the United Nations and regional organizations, progress has been made in the implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). In furthering the implementation of the Council’s resolutions on women and peace and security, I wish to make the following four points.
First, the Council bears the primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. The Council should focus on the prevention of conflicts, peacekeeping and post-conflict reconstruction and on creating an enabling political, security and legal environment for the protection and promotion of women’s rights. When deliberating on conflict and post-conflict situations, the Council should include as central elements the protection of women and their rights. In honouring its commitment to women and peace and security, the Council should abide strictly by the mandate as conferred by the relevant Council resolutions.
The primary focus of the Council is on conflict and post-conflict situations. It is not an appropriate platform for establishing universal standards with regard to women’s issues and human rights. The Council should strengthen its cooperation with the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council and the Human Rights Council with a clear division of labour, thereby strengthening the exchange of information and communication.
Secondly, the national Governments of Member States bear the primary responsibility for protecting women’s rights in conflict and post-conflict situations. In our efforts to protect women’s rights and strengthen their role in peace and security, we must respect the ownership of national Governments. It is important to respect the actions taken by national Governments for the protection of women’s rights in view of each country’s own specific conditions. In implementing resolution 1325 (2000), the international community may provide assistance to the countries concerned, on the basis of full respect for the views of that country.
Thirdly, it is important to value and enhance the status and role of women at the different stages of peace processes. In preventing conflict, keeping and building peace, it is important to take into consideration the special needs and concerns of women and to ensure that women enjoy full rights to participate in decision-making and the peace process, thereby helping to improve their disadvantaged status and effectively support their rights.
China supports the call for the Secretary-General to appoint more women to high-level positions such as Special Representative of the Secretary-General or Special Envoy entrusted with mediation good offices.
Fourthly, the international community should enhance its attention and support to the issue of women and development. Achieving women’s development is the true foundation for achieving women’s genuine empowerment. At present, international development support and technical assistance fall short of the needs of women worldwide. Achieving women’s development therefore remains a daunting challenge in conflict and post-conflict situations. The international community should respond to calls from developing countries effectively and step up assistance for women’s development in developing countries on a basis that is fully respectful of national ownership. The international community, while lending capacity-building support to the countries concerned, should also take note of the useful support role that women’s groups and civil society organizations can play in conflict prevention, peace building and national reconciliation.
Thank you, Mr. President.