Roundtable Report Now Available –

Friday, September 17, 2004


September 16, 2004 - (The Inquirer - Monrovia) A cross-section of women, under the banner "Traditional Women United for Peace", has urged the leadership of the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD) to take a decisive and prompt action thus bringing to a halt news reports about some of its men causing trouble at the Guthrie Rubber Plantation in Bomi County.

September 15, 2004 - (The Nation - Nairobi) Women's under-representation in Somalia's transitional parliament will not derail the country's peace process, a Cabinet minister said yesterday.

September 10, 2004 – (WCRWC) The Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children welcomes the United States' decision to declare genocide in Darfur and urges that the world provide adequate funding to help the 1.2 million Darfurians displaced from their homes, as well as the nearly 200,000 refugees in eastern Chad. Funding must include care and treatment for survivors of the widespread and systematic rape of women and girls by the Arab militia, the Janjaweed, as well as education for children and young people.

WILPF International adopted a resolution on Darfur at its 28th International Congress. It is available on the WILPF International website.

A recent BBC photo series entitled “My Darfur Story: Pictures of Kaltoom's Life Since Fleeing the Janjaweed Militia,” tells the story of Kaltoom Hamid Aseel and her life in the Kalma refugee camp in Darfur in western Sudan. To view this photo series, CLICK HERE.

September 9, 2004 - (Feminist Daily News Wire) The Chief Justice of the Afghan Supreme Court has demanded that candidate Latif Pedram be expelled from the presidential race for questioning marital laws. Speaking at a women's forum, Latif Pedram suggested that the issue of divorce and polygamy be debated, reports the Washington Post. According to Pedram, it is impossible for a husband to treat all four wives equally and that it is unfair that men can divorce their wives at any time, while women must obtain their husband's consent.

September 8, 2004 - (Letter from Women's Initiatives for Gender Justice) We are delighted to announce that today at the Assembly of States Parties in the Hague, Ms Fatou Bensouda of The Gambia was elected by an overwhelming majority to the position of Deputy Prosecutor, Head of Prosecutions, for the International Criminal Court. Ms Bensouda was elected in the first and only round of a secret ballot, securing 58 of the 78 votes cast by delegations. This result indicates a high level of support and confidence by States Parties in the candidate's competence, experience and expertise.

September 2004 – (Women for Women, Vol. 11, No. 3) This issue includes an update on Women for Women's new office in DRC, information about its first commissioned paper “Women Taking a Lead: Progress Toward Empowerment and Gender Equity in Rwanda” which will be available shortly, and news from Founder Zainab Salbi's travels to Jordan, Iraq, Kenya, Rwanda and DRC.

For more country-specific women, peace and security news, CLICK HERE

For more international women, peace and security news, CLICK HERE

Back to Top

October Events in Celebration of Resolution 1325

As we noted in a previous issue of the newsletter, each week of October has been assigned a women, peace and security theme (see below), during which UN, governmental and NGO events will be held to coincide with that particular theme:

4-8 October: Women and Peacebuilding
11-15 October: Women and Elections
18-22 October: Women and Peacekeeping
25-29 October: Women, Peace and Security

No events have yet been finalized other than the Security Council Open Debate on 1325, which will focus on gender-based violence, and will be held on 28 October. As events are finalized we will compile them in an online calendar, which will be available shortly on PeaceWomen's 4th Anniversary Index.

Back to Top

Peace Support Operations: Consolidating Progress and Closing Gaps in the Implementation of UNSC Resolution 1325
1 July 2004, Rockefeller Foundation, New York, USA
Report prepared by the NGOWG on Women, Peace and Security and the Permanent Missions to the UN of Canada, Chile and the United Kingdom

This report is the outcome of a working roundtable held on 1 July 2004 co-sponsored by the NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security (NGOWG) and the Permanent Missions to the UN of Canada, Chile and the United Kingdom. The event, entitled “Peace Support Operations: Consolidating Progress and Closing Gaps in the Implementation of UNSC Resolution 1325,” built on recommendations developed at the first roundtable held in January 2004 (see below). Participants included representatives from both current and incoming Security Council Member States, select non-Security Council Member States, UN agencies and civil society organizations. Opening the session, H.E. Mr Lauro L. Baja, Jr., Permanent Representative of the Republic of Philippines to the United Nations, emphasized “the integration of gender concerns as a pillar, and not merely the ‘icing on the cake' of all peacekeeping mandates.”

Using the framework of the ‘3 Ps'—the principles of conflict prevention, the participation of women in peace and security, and the protection of civilians with consideration to the specific needs of women, men, girls and boys—the roundtable aimed to develop a practical tool to facilitate Security Council members to systematically consider a gender perspective in the drafting of all resolutions, presidential statements and terms of reference for Security Council fact-finding Missions.

In the first part of the roundtable, participants divided into five breakout groups, each consisting of representatives from Security Council Member States, UN agencies and civil society organizations. Each group brainstormed issues to be included in this tool. In the second part of the roundtable, participants engaged in a discussion, facilitated by Katharine Burns, Senior Social Affairs Officer Women, Peace and Security for the United Nations Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women, of expectations, outcomes and strategies around the Secretary-General's upcoming report in October 2004 on the implementation of resolution 1325.

A subsequent presentation by breakout group facilitator Nicola Reindorp of Oxfam International, as well as a plenary discussion facilitated by Ian Martin of the International Center for Transitional Justice, pulled together the ideas generated in both portions of the roundtable…


The following is a tool to aid those drafting Security Council resolutions, presidential statements and terms of reference for Security Council fact-finding Missions to consider issues related to women's participation and a gender perspective. This list of questions is based on a compilation of issues raised in each of the five breakout groups.

List of Questions on Women's Participation and a Gender Perspective to be asked when Drafting Security Council Resolutions

Note: ‘Resolution' here is taken to mean ‘resolution, presidential statement or terms of reference for Security Council fact-finding Missions.'

1. References to resolution 1325:
Is UNSC resolution 1325 referred to in the preambular section and followed by an operational reference?

2. UN Personnel in Peacekeeping Operations:
A. Does the resolution call for the incorporation of a gender perspective into peacekeeping operations through the establishment of a gender component within the staff of a mission?
B. Does the resolution call for an expanded role for women in UN field operations among military, police and civilian personnel?

3. Conflict Prevention:
In recognizing the important role of women in the prevention and resolution of conflicts and in peace-building, does the resolution support the creation and strengthening of non-governmental organizations, including women's organizations, active in conflict prevention work?

4. Promotion and Protection of Human Rights:
A. Does the resolution establish mechanisms to investigate, monitor and report on violations of women's human rights, which may include gender-based violence and sexual abuse?
B. Does the resolution call for mechanisms to bring to justice to those responsible for such violations?

5. Civil Society:
A. Does the resolution recognize the important role of civil society in post-conflict peace-building?
B. Does the resolution encourage regular consultation with civil society organizations, in particular local women's peace initiatives, in the planning and implementation of its field operations?

6. Disarmament, Demobilization, Repatriation, Reintegration and Resettlement:
A. Does the resolution ensure that the disarmament, demobilization, repatriation, reintegration and resettlement (DDRRR) programme upholds the human rights of women and girls—as ex-combatants as well as associates of ex-combatants —through consideration of their specific needs and circumstances?
B. Does the resolution ensure that women and girls are consulted in the design and planning of DDRRR programmes that affect them?

7. Peace Negotiations and Peace Agreements:
A. Does the resolution call for the equal and active participation of women in peace negotiations as well as in the drafting and implementation of peace agreements?
B. Does the resolution call on all actors to integrate a gender perspective when negotiating a peace agreement?

8. Constitution-Creation, Justice and Security Sector Reform:
A. Does the resolution ensure the full and equal participation of women in the process
of creating a constitution and developing a new judiciary?
B. Does the resolution ensure that women's protection and participation is central to the design and reform of security sector institutions and policies, especially in police, military and rule of law components?

9. Governance and Electoral Processes:
A. Does the resolution call for the formation of a government which is fully representative of men and women, allows for the full and equal participation of women in its operations, and respects the human rights of women and girls?
B. Does the resolution call for measures to ensure that women may participate without discrimination in all elections and that women are represented equally at all levels with men in all electoral processes?

10. Reporting:
Does the resolution request that the Secretary-General ensure that his report on the conflict situation integrate a gender perspective?

11. Sexual Exploitation/Codes of Conduct:
Does the resolution, in condemning acts of sexual abuse of women and girls by UN personnel, call for peacekeeping personnel of contributing countries to adhere to pertinent codes of conduct and disciplinary and accountability mechanisms in order to prevent such exploitation?

12. Training of UN Field Personnel:
Does the resolution call for gender training to peacekeeping civilian personnel, including police, and other members of peace and field operations on the rights and protection of women and girls, including on issues related to HIV/AIDS?

13. Obligations Under/Violations of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law:
Does the resolution call for specific measures to strengthen local rule of law and human rights institutions, drawing on existing civilian police, human rights, gender and judicial expertise?

14. Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons:
A. Does the resolution address the particular protection and assistance needs of refugee and internally displaced women and girls?
B. Does the resolution call for the participation of refugee and displaced women in the planning, design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of all programmes providing assistance to refugee and other displaced women, including the management of refugee camps and resources?

15. Humanitarian Assistance/Protection of Civilians:
Does the resolution call for the provision and coordination of humanitarian assistance, and access to humanitarian workers by the civilian population, with a focus on the particular protection needs of women and girls?…

For the full report which includes the list of participants and a full transcript of the remarks made by H.E. Ambassador Lauro L. Baja, Jr., Permanent Mission of the Republic of Philippines to the UN, as well as the event's agenda and concept note, CLICK HERE.

For more information about the first Roundtable event, including the outcome documents, CLICK HERE.

The NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security is pleased to announce the arrival of our new Coordinator, Cora True-Frost. To contact the NGOWG Coordinator: Tel. +1 (212) 682-3633, ext. 3121, Fax: +1 (212) 682-5354, Email:, 777 UN Plaza, 8th Floor, NY, NY 10017

For information about the NGO Working Group, CLICK HERE.

Back to Top

Peace Needs Women & Women Need Justice - Conference on Gender Justice in Post-Conflict Situations
UN Development Fund for Women and the International Legal Assistance Consortium
15-17 September 2004, New York

Women in key legal and judicial positions from over twelve conflict-affected countries arrived in New York this week for an unprecedented conference on gender justice in post-conflict situations. The conference, organized by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and the International Legal Assistance Consortium (ILAC), was a platform for women to discuss, as legal practitioners and from first-hand experience, why gender justice is so crucial to establishing the rule of law and consolidating peace in their countries. Participants also included representatives from Member States, regional organizations, NGOs, academic institutions and relevant UN bodies, including peace operations.

Women ministers, lawyers, and judges from Sierra Leone, Timor-Leste, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Liberia, Namibia, Iraq, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Africa, Haiti, Burundi and Rwanda shared with members of the international community their perspectives on the best practices that have emerged in the area of gender justice. They also laid out the most pressing requirements and implementation action needed in their countries. A key goal of the conference is to provide the basis for improving the coordination of bilateral and multilateral partnerships on gender justice, so that women in conflict-affected areas can have better legal protection for their rights, are able to seek redress for violations of those rights, and have equal access to legal, judicial and constitutional processes.

Security Council Resolution 1325 demands world action to redress the severe inequities, injustices and violations encountered by women and girls in conflict-affected areas. It also emphasizes the important role of women in every stage of peace processes and urges the inclusion of gender perspectives in all post-conflict legal, judicial and constitutional processes. In response to resolution 1325, UNIFEM commissioned two Independent Experts to conduct an assessment of the impact of armed conflict on women, and women's role in peace-building [Women, War, Peace —]. Based on their visits to 14 conflict zones, the Experts issued their findings and recommendations, including on justice, to move implementation of resolution 1325 forward.

Discussions at the conference focused on the Independent Experts' findings and recommendations on justice to determine concrete ways to align local and international efforts in a more coordinated approach to accelerate implementation of resolution 1325. UNIFEM and ILAC will jointly transmit the conference conclusions and recommendations to the United Nations Secretary-General and Security Council for consideration during the Council's open debate on the fourth anniversary of resolution 1325 in October 2004.

For media coverage of the conference, including UNIFEM's media advisory, visit PeaceWomen's International News Index.

UNIFEM's Web Portal on Women, Peace & Security:

Back to Top

System of Impunity: Nationwide Patterns of Sexual Violence by the Military Regime's Army and Authorities in Burma
Women's League of Burma
September 2004
Executive Summary

This report System of Impunity documents detailed accounts of sexual violence against women in all the ethnic states, as well as in central areas of Burma. These stories demonstrate patterns of continuing widespread, and systematic human rights violations being perpetrated by the regime's armed forces and authorities.

Women and girls from different ethnic groups report similar stories of rape, including gang rape; rape and murder; sexual slavery; and forced “marriage”. Significantly, almost all the incidents took place during the last two years, precisely while the regime has been repeatedly denying the prevalence of military rape in Burma.

These stories bear witness to the fact that, despite the regime's claims to the contrary, nothing has changed in Burma. Regardless of their location, be it in the civil war zones, the ceasefire areas or “non-conflict” areas, it is clear that no woman or girl is safe from rape and sexual torture under the current regime. Soldiers, captains, commanders and other SPDC officials continue to commit rape, gang rape and murder of women and children, with impunity.

The documented stories demonstrate the systematic and structuralized nature of the violence, and the climate of impunity which not only enables the military to evade prosecution for rape and other crimes against civilian women, but also fosters a culture of continued and escalating violence. Even when crimes are reported no action is taken and moreover complainants are victimised, threatened or imprisoned. Women and children continue to be raped, used as sex slaves, tortured and murdered across the country by the regime's armed forces and authorities.

It is clear that the rapes and violence are not committed by rogue elements within the military but are central to the modus operandi of this regime. Structuralized and systematic human rights violations, including sexual violence, are an inevitable result of the regime's policies of military expansion and consolidation of control by all possible means over a disenfranchised civilian population.

This is why there can be no other solution to the problem of systematic sexual violence in Burma than an end to military rule. While countries in the region, members of ASEAN, and particularly Burma's neighbours, appear willing to overlook human rights issues in their dealings with Burma, women of Burma wish to highlight that these policies of constructive engagement have grave repercussions for the citizens of Burma, particularly women and children. The political support which the regime is gaining from the region is emboldening it to continue its policies of militarization and accompanying sexual violence. It is directly placing the lives of women and girls in Burma at risk.

For the full report, CLICK HERE.

For more information about the Women's League of Burma, and to view this report from their website, visit:

For the WLB press release announcing the report, CLICK HERE
Contact information for the WLB: P.O. Box 413, G.P.O., Chiangmai 50000 Thailand,

Other New Reports

Gender and Peace-building in Africa
Kari Karamé, ed., Training for Peace Programme (TFP), a joint programme between the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI) in Oslo, the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) in Durban and the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) in Pretoria
August 2004

This report features the following articles: “Gender Mainstreaming The Peace-Building Process” by Kari Karamé; “Gender, International Legal Framework And Peace-Building” by Christine Chinkin; “Involving Women In Peace Processes: Lessons From Four African Countries (Burundi, DRC, Liberia And Sierra Leone)” by Nadine Puechguirbal; and “Men, Masculinities And Peacekeeping In Sub-Saharan Africa” by Paul R. Higate.

For the full report, CLICK HERE.

To view the report on the Training for Peace Programme website, and for more information about TFP, visit:

The Gender Perspective as a Deterrent to Spoilers: The Sierra Leone Experience
Desmond Molloy, Officer in Charge of the DDR Section at UNAMSIL, Conflict Trends, Issue 2, ACCORD, Special Edition on Peacekeeping, 2004

In February 2004, the Government of Sierra Leone declared the Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) programmes as an aspect of the peace process in the context of the Lomé Peace Accord, completed. As with most peace initiatives, the initial period after the signing of the Accord in 1999 was a bumpy ride, with progress followed by disappointment as warlords, their sub-regional collaborators and power brokers maneuvered for advantage. In 2001 decisive action by the international community and military defeat of the most belligerent faction enabled the implementation of the process. Now deemed as the most successful implementation of a UN supported peace process to date, it is under intense academic scrutiny, seeking lessons learned and designing replicable templates to address other conflicts.

One unequivocal admission by all stakeholders in the delivery of the peace is that the process failed women, not only as beneficiaries but also as participants with a huge potential to deliver an improved peace process. At the stage of the articulation of the Peace Accord, very little attention was given to the issue of female combatants as well as the so-called camp followers who ultimately escaped the reintegration net. In the process of implementation, very many organisations with expertise in dealing with female combatants as well as other victims of war were either underutilised or marginalised. Consequently any attempt to redress the situation of these women during the DDR process was bound to be of an ad-hoc nature with minimal impact on their future life. In this short paper I review the extent of this challenge and suggest how the gender perspective formally included in peace negotiations offers an improved method of delivering peace.

For the full report, CLICK HERE.

For the full edition of Conflict Trends, visit ACCORD's website at:

For NGO and civil society reports, papers and statements, UN and government reports, and books, journals and articles on women, peace and security issues, CLICK HERE.

Back to Top

Pacific Women Exploring Nonviolence
Video Documentary
6 September 2004

This 25-minute video originates from and features a consultation for 20 women peace activists organized by the Women Peacemakers Program (WPP) of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation in East Timor in February 2004.

The IFOR Women Peacemakers Program Pacific Consultation brought together women from Bougainville, East Timor, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands to exchange experiences and to deepen their skills in nonviolent conflict resolution. Each participant had experienced violent conflict: as a freedom fighter, a refugee or a peacebuilder.

A narrative report of the entire consultation is available upon request.

For more information about this video, the consultation, and the Women Peacemakers Program (WPP) of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation, contact Banafshe Hejazi, WPP Information Officer at: or visit

For NGO and civil society reports, papers and statements, UN and government reports, and books, journals and articles on women, peace and security issues, CLICK HERE.

Back to Top

Launch of the Mano River Women's Peace Network Website

The Mano River Women's Peace Network (MARWOPNET) is pleased to announce the launching of their new website, This bi-lingual site, published in French and English, highlights the work of this organization, a network of more than 100 civil society groups, particularly women's associations, located in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia.

The Network, created in 2000 with support from the Economic Community of West African States, Organization of African Unity and the UN System under an initiative of the NGO Femmes Africa Solidarite, aims to advance the role of women in promoting peace, security and development in the Mano River sub-region.

The website will be expanded in the near future to include highlights from MARWOPNET's upcoming newsletter, Voices of Peace, featuring poetry, testimonies, drawings, case studies and other information collected from MARWOPNET-Guinea's eight field offices. Located in prefectures on the borders with Sierra Leone, Liberia and the Cote d'Ivoire, these new offices opened their doors in February 2004 to promote peace-building activities at the grassroots level.

MARWOPNET invites readers to visit the site regularly for information about the Network's activities and events. The organization also welcomes feedback on its site; to send a comment, please write to, Ccing Women's peace organizations are also invited to submit the URLs of their websites for's links section.

For more women, peace and security initiatives – in country, regional, global and international, CLICK HERE.

Workshop for Women Peacemakers in Zambia
IFOR and the Youth Forum for Peace and Justice
September 26-October 2, 2004, Zambia
In order to empower and raise women's voices for peacebuilding through media the very first workshop on this topic took place in India in 2002. Through interactive and participatory working methods, women peacemakers were trained in media skills and journalists in the importance of gender-sensitivity. Peace activists and journalists learned from each other's experiences and competences, and journalists were made aware of the importance and news value of women's peace building. The workshop in Zambia will be organized together with the IFOR affiliate Youth Forum for Peace and Justice; the methodology of the India workshop will be adapted to the specific needs of the African participants. For more information, contact the IFOR Women Peacemakers Program at tel +31 (0)72 512 3014, fax +31 (0)72 515 1102,

Asking the Right Questions: Nonviolence Training and Gender - An International Women's Consultation for Trainers
October 3-8, 2004, Chiang Mai, Thailand
This international consultation is open to women trainers seeking to integrate nonviolence and gender issues in a wide variety of social change movements. While gender has been increasingly recognized as a critical factor in peace and development during the past decade, gender continues to raise as many questions as it answers. For more information, visit or contact Shelley Anderson at:

Building the Other Superpower! A pan-Canadian Peace Conference
5-7 November 2004, Toronto, Canada
This conference, jointly organized by the Canadian Peace Alliance, Toronto Coalition to Stop the War, Canadian Voice of Women for Peace and WILPF-Toronto is a chance for peace organizations in Canada to get together, share experiences, debate and develop future directions for the movement. WILPF Toronto is organizing a workshop entitled "Disarmament: From the Corridors of Power to the Streets of Canada," which will be facilitated by Susi Snyder, Director of the WILPF UN Office, New York. A workshop on Resolution 1325 will also be held in collaboration with Voice of Women (VOW). For more information, please contact Sheri Gibbings at: and visit:

For a comprehensive list of Beijing +10 Regional Meetings, CLICK HERE.

For the complete calendar items, CLICK HERE.

Back to Top

The PeaceWomen is a project of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF).

Previous issues of 1325 PeaceWomen E-News can be found at:

At this time 1325 PeaceWomen E-News is only available in English. The PeaceWomen Team hopes to translate the newsletter into French and Spanish in the future. If you would not like to receive the English newsletter but would like to be placed on a list when translation is possible, please write to:

To unsubscribe from the 1325 PeaceWomen News, send an email to with "unsubscribe" as the subject heading.

Questions, concerns and comments can be sent to 1325 E-News and other submissions should be directed to


1. Women, Peace and Security News
2. Preparations for the Fourth Anniversary of Resolution 1325: 6 Weeks To Go
3. NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security: Roundtable Report Now Available � Peace Support Operations: Consolidating Progress and Closing Gaps in the Implementation of UNSC Resolution 1325
4. Feature Event: Peace Needs Women & Women Need Justice - Conference on Gender Justice in Post-Conflict Situations (UNIFEM and ILAC)
5. Feature Reports: System of Impunity: Nationwide Patterns of Sexual Violence by the Military Regime's Army and Authorities in Burma (Women's League of Burma) & Others
6. Feature Resource: Pacific Women Exploring Nonviolence � A Video Documentary
7. Feature Initiative: Launch of the Mano River Women's Peace Network (MARWOPNET) Website
8. Women, Peace and Security Calendar