Exhibition on Nam women in peacekeeping opens

23 Sep 2015 12:10pm

By Maggy Thomas NEW YORK, 23 SEP (NAMPA) ? Namibian women in peacekeeping missions have demonstrated remarkable commitment, high competence and an aptitude for innovation. Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah said this on Thursday when she officially opened a photo exhibition showcasing the involvement of Namibian women in peacekeeping processes, as part of the commemoration of the 15th anniversary of the United Nations (UN) Security Council Resolution 1325. The resolution highlights the importance of women in peacekeeping missions and the resolution of conflicts, and calls on member states to fully involve women in efforts to build and maintain peace. The exhibition, held under the theme ?Women lead the way as agents of peace and security?, is appropriate and timely as it underscores the prominent role played by women in conflict prevention, resolution and post war peace-building. The exhibition is taking place on the margins of the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly. Fifteen years ago, Namibia championed what is now known as the Resolution Security Council: Resolution 1325, which marked a turning point in promoting women as peacemakers. It was adopted by the UN in October 2000. The UN security Council Resolution 1325 addresses not only the negative impact of war on women, but equally the pivotal role women should and do play in conflict management, conflict resolution and maintenance of peace. Nandi-Ndaitwah explained that Resolution 1325 was a product of its time, and its adoption has been hailed as a good beginning. There has been notable progress in the implementation of the resolution, especially in terms of awareness; expansion of the numbers of women peacekeepers; gender advisors and training for women leaders, among others. ?As Namibia, we are highly encouraged by this progress, having initiated the discussion that led to the adoption of Resolution 1325. However, our work is not done,? she said. The minister said the implementation of meaningful measures to address the problem globally is still lagging. ?We in Namibia have and continue to play our part. Today Namibian women are rising through ranks and expanding their influence at an ever-increasing rate, serving magnificently nationally and all over the world. More importantly, they have served for peace and stability,? she said. For this reason, Nandi-Ndaitwah said she is convinced that Resolution 1325 should be viewed as an effective framework that can enhance inclusiveness, transparency and sustainability of the peace process. She called on the UN to engage women in high level decision-making and peace processes including special envoys, special representatives, peacekeepers, mediators and negotiators. She reaffirmed Namibia?s strong commitment to the full implementation of Resolution 1325 and other resolutions on women, peace and security, and said the country will remain seized of this agenda. She called upon all member states and UN agencies to continue working together and create an environment free of violence, where women and men, girls and boys can live in dignity. In a few days? time, the UN General Assembly will adopt the Post-2015 Development Agenda that builds on the Millennium Development Goals (MDG). The link between peace and development cannot be overemphasised, she said, adding that for the Post-2015 Development Agenda to be truly transformative, women must be at its centre and front. ?Women are not just victims, they are and should be agents of peace and progress,? she added. Nandi-Ndaitwah then encouraged all stakeholders to work together to achieve gender equality during the time frame set by the Post-2015 Development Agenda. (NAMPA) MMT/LI/AS