Qatar has expressed concern over security of women in conflict zones and called on the global community to address the issue with “direct efforts on multiple fronts”.
Addressing a Security Council meeting on “Women and peace and security: Women, rule of law and transitional justice in conflict-affected situations”, Qatar’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Sheikha Alia Ahmed bint Seif al-Thani said that issue of women, peace and security cannot be tackled without addressing the root causes of women’s suffering and insecurity, adding that women’s protection needs direct efforts on multiple fronts. One of these efforts is to implement laws necessary to protect them during armed conflicts, without discrimination or selectivity. Another is to call upon conflict parties to take special measures to protect women and girls from gender-based violence in armed conflict situations, she added.
“The status of women in the conflict zones is a matter of concern”, Qatar’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations said, adding that women and girls are subjected to the worst kinds of violence as a result of these conflicts, and women bear the bulk of the burden due to human rights violations.
Palestinian women face the consequences of the unfair Israeli practices which the rest of the Palestinian people in the occupied territories are suffering from as well, especially in the Gaza Strip, she said, adding that women bear the bulk of the difficulties caused by the unjust Israeli practices. Besides the economic blockade Israel continued detaining people including women, and continued to block the movement of Palestinian women at several barriers, said Qatar’s Permanent Representative, noting that women prisoners are subjected to practices contrary to international values and conventions and humanitarian and moral values.
Sheikha Alia said women and children in Syria are among the most vulnerable to and most affected by serious violence. They are subjected to sexual and physical and psychological abuse, rape and sexual violence, harassment, humiliation and torture during the raids carried out by forces loyal to the regime, and are punished because their relatives are wanted for the regime, she said, stressing that such actions amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity. Sheikha Alia held the Syrian regime fully responsible for crimes against Syrian women and girls.
Sheikha Alia hailed the Security Council’s consideration of women, peace and security issue after 13 years of the adoption of the historic resolution 1325 (2000), and after a number of achievements in upgrading skills of women, especially in international peace and security, but said it comes at a time when weakness in the role of women in decision-making on their future, security and stability continued. It also comes at a time when violation of their rights - especially in the Arab world - are taking place.
Qatar’s Permanent representative to the UN added that the Security Council has taken several measures on the participation and role of women in conflict prevention and resolution and in post-conflict peace building, saying that it is necessary to follow up on the implementation of these measures in order to realise the vision set out in resolution 1325.
She stressed the need to involve women in peace-making and keeping, in post-conflict peace-building and in consolidating security, indicating that women’s participation is not enough.
Sheikha Alia pointed to the need to facilitate women’s access to transitional justice mechanisms, particularly on the crimes committed during the conflict and transition era.
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