Mr. Robert Serry, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process and Personal Representative of the Secretary-General, briefed the Council on the
situation in the Middle East, focusing on the status of negotiations between, and the current situations in, Israel and Palestine; the continuing crisis in Syria and
preparations for Geneva II talks; and the security and political situations in Lebanon. Key references included the release of prisoners as part of the timeline in
Israel/Palestine talks, continued settlement activity and frequent search-and-arrest operations, violence between settlers and Palestinians, increasing demolitions of
unlicensed Palestinian structures in Area C and East Jerusalem, the critical humanitarian (exacerbated by flooding) and energy situations in Gaza (but with the
positive resumption of construction material transfer into Gaza), and a relatively calm security situation in and around Gaza. Regarding Syria, the Special
Coordinator highlighted that, despite a briefing on the use of chemical weapons that morning, the vast majority of killings and destruction continued to be carried
out with conventional weapons, and called on all parties to take immediate confidence-building measures in preparation for Geneva II talks. Finally, he references a
tense security situation in Lebanon, including in Palestinian refugee camps, and acknowledged the continuing deadlock in the formation of a new Government.
There is no mention of women, peace and security.
The Special Coordinator missed many opportunities to address women, peace and security concerns in several crisis situations across the Middle East. There is no
mention of women’s critical role in conflict resolution, mediation and peacebuilding processes (in all three countries), nor of their participation in political reform,
especially in stalled discussions within Lebanon. With the upcoming Geneva II talks on Syria, he does not stress the importance of women’s participation and
representation in such a process. He also neglects to highlight the protection needs of women in all three situations, especially those displaced as a result of the Syria
In relation to the most recent MAP on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question (August 2013), the Special Coordinator offers minimal
response. There is no reference to women’s role in the Israel/Palestine peace process, nor to women and girls protection needs. Furthermore, it offers no gender
analysis of the crisis in Syria, nor of the spillover effects into Lebanon.
As with the previous briefing on the Middle East, including the Palestinian question, S/PV.7063, there is again no mention of women, peace and security here.