SRSG Keating hosts Open Day on women, peace and security
Mogadishu - The Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Somalia, Michael Keating, hosted Somali women leaders at an Open Day on the Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security.
SRSG Keating noted that the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 represents a major breakthrough, as it reaffirms the role of women in peace-making, prevention and resolution of conflicts, peace negotiations, and prevention and protection of women and girls from conflict, and stresses the importance of their equal participation and full involvement in all efforts aimed at achieving peace and security.
“The question for us, in this room, today, is how do we translate that into something that delivers real results in Somalia”, Keating posed to the women leaders in attendance.
“We owe it to the dead, and we owe it to those who have been wounded, and to you who have suffered, to honour that suffering by achieving results in the area of peace and security, and I am one hundred percent sure that women have absolutely a central role in doing that,” he said.
Resolution 1325 also urges all actors to increase the participation of women, and incorporate gender perspectives in all United Nations’ and countries’ peace and security efforts.
“This forum is being held at the right time, when the government is involving women and the general public to contribute towards security and stabilization of the country in order to realize development”, H.E. Khadija Mohamed Diriye, the Minister of Youth and Sports said in her remarks.
The Minister appreciated the Open Day event as important in boosting the Federal Government’s efforts in enhancing women’s participation in peace and security affairs of the country.
The event brought together women from the political arena, civil society, security and the private sector, to deliberate on women’s leadership in peace negotiations and conflict resolution in Somalia.
The chairperson of Somalia National Women Organization, Ms. Batula Sheikh Ahmed Gaballe, who played a critical role in the advocacy campaign for the attainment of women’s 30% reserved seats in the 2016 electoral process, emphasized on the inter-linkages of women’s political empowerment and leadership and decision-making role and the state of security in the country.
“In Somalia, women’s political empowerment, particularly their enhanced role in leadership and decision-making, is closely linked with state of security,” Ms. Batula emphasized.
Participants at the Open Day, through the voices of Mina Hassan Mohamed and Farhiya Ali Farah, presented additional statements calling for improved protection of women parliamentarians, and concerted efforts to make Somali a secure and peaceful country.
The Security Council Resolution 1325 also calls on all parties to conflict to take special measures to protect women and girls from sexual and gender-based violence, particularly rape and other forms of sexual abuse, in situations of armed conflict.