I strongly welcome this meeting and its call for strong commitments and increased accountability. I would also like to welcome the invitation by the government of Uganda to the Ministerial meeting on 1325 October 29 where Norway will be represented by our Minister of Defence.
Based on our National Action Plan from 2006, the Norwegian Government will launch a new strategy for the implementation of resolution 1325 in November. The strategy will contain a number of time-bound and concrete goals as well as indicators. The overall goal of the strategy is to increase women's participation in the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts.
Among the commitments of the Norwegian government are:
- Develop concrete measures to increase the number of women in peace negotiations and ensure a gender perspective in the negotiations, based on our experiences as facilitators in peace processes.
- Support the implementation of National Action Plans, for instance in Nepal, where Norway has supported women's participation in the peace process.
- Increase the number of women in the Military.
- Build capacities to help accelerate the integration of a gender perspective in military operations.
- Develop guidelines and training for the Military on protection of civilians from conflict-related sexual violence.
- Increase the number of women in international police operations.
- Contribute to strengthening the gender perspectives in Security Sector Reform initiatives.
- Increase our funding to combat conflict-related sexual violence and provide better medical-responses to the survivors, with a particular focus on the Democratic Republic of Congo.
- Support and strengthen international efforts to increase the prosecution of perpetrators of sexual violence.
- Continue to earmark funds for the implementation of resolution 1325 in our humanitarian funds and our peace and reconciliation funds.
- Continue to demand that all recipients of all humanitarian- , peace- and transition-funds report on the integration of a gender perspective and the implementation of 1325.
Women, peace and security is a priority for the Norwegian government, and we are committed to strengthening our efforts and our own accountability. We firmly believe that increasing women's participation will make us better equipped to understand, respond to and solve contemporary conflicts.
In conclusions, we would like to welcome the appointment of Ms. Bachelet as head of the newly established UN Women and we are confident that this will strengthen the UN's implementation of gender mainstreaming in general, and 1325 in particular.