The 2017 Open Day on Women Peace and Security
The auditorium was full as UNIFIL’s Gender Advisor, Dr. Afaf Omer, took to the stage to launch the Open Day on Women, Peace and Security on Friday in the Bassel Al Assad Center in Tyre.
In her address, Dr. Omer highlighted the importance of the landmark UN Security Council Resolution 1325 as it recognized the relevance of gender in peace and security matters, and mandated all UN Member States to ensure full participation of women at all levels of decision-making in conflict resolution and peace processes.
In his address to the UNIFIL-organized gathering of some 300 women from all walks of life in south Lebanon, UNIFIL’s Deputy Head of Mission, Imran Riza, applauded the choice of the theme of women’s participation in national politics.
“Women’s full political participation is key to the implementation of UN Security Council Agenda on Women, Peace, and Security,” said Mr. Riza.
A member of the Marjayoun Gender Working Group, Sabah Abbas said, “As we stand here, we congratulate and support the women who set an example by nominating themselves to the municipal elections whether they won or not. They broke social taboos, faced the challenges, and succeeded.”
Representing the Bint Jbeil Gender Working Group, Nada Bazi made a request, “We ask UNIFIL and the other UN entities to support women’s participation in political life by organizing awareness campaigns (on the issue).”
UNIFIL’s Head of Mission and Force Commander, Major General Michael Beary, was impressed by the discussions.
“An articulated and recognized women’s perspective on peace and security, such as the one under discussion today, is essential, as throughout history, women and girls have suffered disproportionately from wars and armed conflicts,” said the UNIFIL head.
The 10 March event was organized by UNIFIL in collaboration with the Gender Working Groups of three districts in the UN Mission’s area of operation in south Lebanon: Tyre, Marjayoun and Bint Jbeil. Participants included the women running for public office, elected representatives, female mukhtars, activists and teachers.
The Open Day on Women, Peace and Security is an annual event organized on the occasion of International Women’s Day (8 March), during which the participants can share their views and concerns with the head of UN Mission.
Article: Tilak Pokharel, Aoibheann O’Sullivan
Camera: Aoibheann O’Sullivan
Editor: Suzane Badereddine, Mohamad Hamze
Stills: Ghifar Charafeddine, Karl Johntson