The Role of Women in Promoting Peace and Development in the Horn of Africa

Thursday, September 22, 2011 - 20:00 to Saturday, September 24, 2011 - 20:00
PeaceWomen Consolidated Themes: 
Peace Processes
Reconstruction and Peacebuilding
Eastern Africa
Northern Africa

The Horn of African conferences have since its inception focused on issues related to peace, security and development. So far, none of the conferences has yet had an explicit focus on the linkages between gender, peace and development. This time the focus of the conference is set on these linkages. We know that the violence has had disproportionate effects on the lives of women. Often as targets of extreme forms of violence, women in the Horn of Africa experience the full impact of violent conflict in the region as civilians and combatants, but are generally excluded from the decision-making processes that ignite wars or put an end to hostilities.

In a joint effort between United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and Club de Madrid to promote women's leadership for peace and security in the Greater Horn of Africa, they described the situation for women in the region:

“Priority is rarely given to developing women's individual and collective capacity to address these conflicts and to build stable, peaceful and democratic institutions in the Horn of Africa. Women generally remain absent from policy dialogue with government on critical issues for peace and security that have fundamental gender dimensions and implications for sustainable stability. United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (UNSCR 1325) was adopted in 2000 for the empowerment of women as peace builders in conflict and post conflict settings, yet most of its commitments have not been implemented.”

Women are important agents for creating stability in the lives of their families and to promote reconciliation and peace even under very difficult and traumatic situations. However, women's peace building potential have had no significant impact on policies and decision relating to conflicts because of their absence from the decision making processes and bodies in the region.

The conference aims at raising awareness about the importance of implementation of these resolutions in the Horn of Africa, especially in countries emerging from conflict. The rational behind the conference is to give attention to the situation for women and their concern over peace and development, and to strengthen their role in the promotion of peace and development in the Horn of Africa.

The objective of the conference is to:

• Raise awareness of women's needs and situation in the Horn of Africa.

• Raise awareness of Horn of African governments' social service expenditures.

• Raise awareness of UNSCR 1325 and 1820 in a Horn of African context.

• Promote the inclusion of Horn of African women in the decision-making positions in their respective governments, as well as in regional and international organizations.

• Promote women's memberships in governmental decision-making institutions.

• Promote the participation of Horn of African women in conflict prevention and resolution processes.

• Promote networking between Horn of African women peace organizations, and other stakeholders.

• Promote maintenance and protection of due process of law and constitutionalism in Horn of African countries

There are special invitations to political scientists, sociologists, historians, economists, practitioners, lawyers, civics, institutions, and policy-makers to conference as presenters. Your inputs and perspectives bring vital insights into peaceful solutions to women's issues in the Horn of Africa.

For more information please contact:

Abdillahi Jama, Conference Coordinator

Somalia International Rehabilitation Centre (SIRC)

BOX 974,

220 09 Lund, Sweden,

Tel/fax: +46 46-2114502,

Mobil: +4673-989 75 33,,

Former Ambassador to UN, Count Pietersen,

Conference Co-Coordinator

Somalia International Rehabilitation Centre (SIRC)

BOX 974

220 09 Lund, Sweden

Tel: +46 46-2115269