An online conference addressing the Women, Peace and Security Agenda was held on 26 November 2020, bringing together experts in the field from CEDC countries as well as Western Balkan partners. In 2020, we mark the 20th anniversary of adopting the historic UN Security Council Resolution on Women, Peace and Security (1325), and the 25th anniversary of adopting the Beijing Declaration on Gender Equality. These two documents, together with other UN Security Council resolutions, form the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) Agenda.
Despite significant progress, girls and women in many parts of the world are still too often neglected, discriminated against, unequal to men, too often the victims of human trafficking and slavery, and of early and forced marriages. Sexual and gender-based violence is often used for political, economic and military purposes. The international community must therefore remain committed to the protection and safeguarding of women and girls, their political engagement, and the strengthening of their economic power. Men and boys should be engaged in activities to address gender inequality as positive agents of change.
At the conference, the experts discussed the following topics. How is the WPS Agenda reflected in the structure of Armed Forces of participating countries, in terms of their organization and functioning for the empowerment and equal participation of women? How do female members of the Armed Forces and female civilian functional experts contribute to the implementation of the WPS Agenda on the field by participating in international operations and missions? What are the civil-military cooperation projects in which the Armed Forces are included as part of the international development cooperation and humanitarian aid, focusing on empowerment of girls and women, as well as prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse? What are the countries’ plans for the future?
The conference was co-organised by the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Slovenia and the Slovenian Peacekeeping Operations Training Centre, as part of the Republic of Slovenia’s CEDC presidency in 2020.