At the UN Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security (WPS), the UAE called for the international community to promote the participation of women in peace and security efforts to prevent conflict and promote sustainable peace. The UAE reaffirmed its commitment to advocate for the full participation of women in all aspects of leadership and decision-making.

In the statement delivered by Mr. Saod Rashed AlMazrouei, a diplomat at the Permanent Mission of the UAE to the UN, the UAE reiterated its commitment to building a strong framework for action to realize the full implementation of the WPS agenda, having co-sponsored Resolution 2242 in 2015 that integrates a gender perspective into peace and security-related issues at the UN. He noted that the UAE is a founding member of the National Focal Points Network, which is coordinating and implementing the WPS agenda at the national level around the world.

Mr. AlMazrouei highlighted that a confluence of threats – ranging from the rise in terrorism and violent extremism to the targeting of women and girls in conflict zones, to the protracted nature of the displacement crisis – impedes the effective implementation of the WPS agenda. He pointed out that the full and meaningful participation of women in every aspect of society is one of the founding principles of the UAE. It is in recognition of this principle that one of the three key pillars of UAE’s foreign assistance strategy includes women’s empowerment and protection, as respect for the rights of women and girls underpins every aspect of UAE’s approach to its global response.

In addition, Mr. AlMazrouei recognized the strong partnership between the UAE and UN-Women as a key element of the UAE’s national strategy to implement the WPS agenda.

“As a symbol of our strong partnership, and under the leadership of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, the UAE and UN-Women launched a Liaison Office in Abu Dhabi in 2016, which will enhance and strengthen collaboration to advance gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls – a core part of the WPS agenda in the region,” stressed Ms. AlMazrouei.

Mr. AlMazrouei recognized that a strong research base is required to ensure that policies intended to operationalize the WPS agenda are data-driven and effective. He noted that the UAE contributes to UN-Women’s “Women, Peace and Security Global Progamme” to promote conflict resilient societies through prevention efforts that facilitate women’s participation, leadership, and the protection of their rights. Through gender-sensitive research and data collection, the Global Programme has revealed the drivers of extremist violence, and the impacts of counter-terrorism strategies on women’s rights and women’s organizations.

He also highlighted that the UAE supports the UN’s Team of Experts: Rule of Law/Sexual Violence in Conflict in the development and implementation of an action plan on conflict-related sexual violence in Somalia. This team establishes prevention and response mechanisms, of which accountability is a central element to addressing sexual violence in conflict.