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[Luxembourg 2005 Presidency of the Council of the European Union]

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EU Statement for the seminar on the role of women in conflict prevention and crisis management

Date of Speech : 20-06-2005

Place : Vienna

Speaker : Ulla Friis

Policy area : General Affairs and External Relations

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union. First of all we would like to congratulate the Swedish government for organising this seminar and thank the Foreign Minister of Sweden, Madame Laila Freivalds, for focusing on a crucial question for this Organization and its participating States.

The EU would like to emphasise the importance which it attaches to the role of women in the prevention and resolution of conflicts and in crisis management. This is a cross-dimensional issue relating to all three dimensions of the OSCE, as is the Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security.

During the Conference of EU Ministers of Gender Equality that took place in Luxembourg on 4th of February, the EU has reaffirmed its commitment to implement and encourage initiatives, policies and programmes following the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 concerning women, peace and security. In particular, the European Union has supported and will continue to support grassroots initiatives for conflict prevention and peace- building by women’s organisations in many parts of the world. In addition, on May 23rd, the European Council has adopted Generic Standards of Behaviour for ESDP Operations in which relevant bodies are encouraged to carry out further work in areas related to the implementation of specific aspects of UN Security Council Resolution 1325. European Union member States can point to very positive practical experiences from the deployment of women in operational roles in peace- keeping and crisis management missions.

The international community has indeed increasingly recognized the positive contributions women can make to preventing conflicts and consolidating peace. In that regard the 2004 OSCE Gender Action Plan, endorsed by the Sofia Ministerial Council, is a first step in improving the effectiveness of the OSCE.

The EU strongly supports the full implementation of the OSCE Action Plan for the Promotion of Gender Equality. The aims of the plan are relevant to the work of the OSCE in all three dimensions and must be implemented by the participating States, the Secretariat, the Institutions and Field Missions. We encourage all concerned, in particular the Secretary General, to ensure a comprehensive integration of Resolution 1325 related issues into OSCE activities in a systematic manner. The implementation plans called for in the Gender Action Plan should provide for concrete measures in this regard. We are looking forward to the first annual evaluation report on gender issues to be presented by the Secretary General. 

In closing, Madame Moderator, the EU would like to stress that we are looking forward to the follow up to this seminar at the Ministerial Council in Ljubljana.

The Acceeding Countries Bulgaria and Romania and the Candidate Countries Turkey and Croatia* align themselves with this statement.

* Croatia continues to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process

This page was last modified on : 20-06-2005

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