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Inside the UN Security Council: WPS Open Debate and Advocacy

By Anne Lescure, United Nations Security Council Monitor Charo Mina-Rojas, a member of the human rights team of the Black Communities’ Process, the Afro-Colombian Solidarity Network, the Black Alliance for Peace, and the Special High Level Body for Ethnic Peoples, addresses the Security Council’s open debate on Women, Peace and Security (Photo: NGO Working Group on WPS).

On 27 October 2017, the 17th annual Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security (WPS) was held under the Presidency of France. The concept note for the event was circulated a day before the debate, calling Member States to reflect on WPS implementation in the past 17 years and highlight concrete actions for strengthening the Agenda at all levels, with a special focus on women’s meaningful participation in the prevention and resolution of conflicts. 

WILPF worked with our coalition the NGO Working Group on Women Peace and Security to support Charo Mina-Rojas from Colombia as the civil society speaker. In her civil society statement, Ms Mina-Rojas called for increased support for diverse women, including indigenous women, and for strengthened support for demilitarisation and disarmament. “Colombia risks wasting this opportunity for peace if it does not completely disarm itself and if the communities most impacted by the internal armed conflict, including women human rights leaders and activists, continue to be ignored in the implementation of the Peace Accord”, said Ms Mina-Rojas. 

The speakers at the debate agreed that real progress in women’s meaningful engagement in peacebuilding and their protection from sexual violence were seriously lagging. Many speakers urged for more gender expertise across all UN activities and called for deepened consultations with civil society organisations. However, crucial issues for the WPS Agenda, such as financing and disarmament, did not receive enough attention. Moreover, the underlying reasons for violence against women and women’s marginalisation, which stem from patriarchal and militarised political economies, were not addressed.  

Read WILPF’s Analysis of the Security Council’s Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security here>>

Find the Implementation and Commitment Record from the Security Council’s Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security here>>

Read the Civil Society Statement delivered at the Security Council’s Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security here>>