Qatar stressed the need to ensure the full and effective participation of women in all peace efforts, even during crises, such as the Covid-19 pandemic.
This came in a speech by HE the Permanent Representative of Qatar to the United Nations ambassador Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif al-Thani, at the virtual seminar organised by the Center for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies on International Women's Day. Canada's Ambassador for Women, Peace and Security Jacqueline O'Neill and member of the Afghan Peace Negotiations Team in Doha Fatima Gailani participated in the seminar.
HE Sheikha Alya said that Qatar's strategy on women in peace-building is a comprehensive one, stressing the link between the strategy and sustainable development and economic empowerment of women to provide conditions conducive to stability, security and prosperity for all.
She said that the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 constitutes a strong normative framework for dealing with women and building peace, explaining that the resolution, with its four pillars related to prevention, participation, protection, peace-building and recovery, is the basis of peace and has led to unparalleled measures by member states, UN entities and civil society at the international, regional and national levels.
HE Sheikha Alya referred to the global study for the year 2015 on the implementation of the Security Council resolution, which was funded by Qatar, as it revealed the gap between the normative frameworks and the implementation on the ground.
The main reason, she said, was a lack of political will, accountability, resources and institutional barriers.
She stressed the need to ensure the implementation of the current international instruments to protect women and involve them in times of conflict and peace-building, stressing the need to ensure the full and effective participation of women in all peace efforts even during crises, such as the Covid-19 pandemic.
In this context, HE Sheikha Alya pointed out the retreat in the progress made in the field of women's rights during the pandemic at all levels, including the peace and security agenda.
She stressed the recognition of women's role in building peace and that it should not be a time-limited task or be restricted to a group of actors, saying that it is a common task and responsibility among all and at all times.

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HE Sheikha Alya stressed the main role women play in mediating and sustaining peace, but at the same time she warned against the absence and marginalisation of women from the negotiating table, whether at the international or national levels.
She emphasised the need to bring those directly involved in the conflict to the negotiating table — men and women alike — rather than relying on foreign experts, stressing the need for more mediators from the affected region.
She pointed to the importance of investing in mediation capacity to provide negotiation skills, training, logistical support and mediation for women to help them fully and meaningfully participate in peace building processes, and in this context, she referred to the emergence of strong women leaders in peace negotiations in Afghanistan and Sudan, for example.
She praised the strategy of Qatar, which considers the promotion of transitional justice for women to be extremely important, noting the role of the State in facilitating the establishment of the international, impartial and independent mechanism by providing it with financial support, in order to assist in the investigation of the persons responsible for the most serious crimes committed in Syria since (2011), in violation of international law.
HE Sheikha Alya referred to the role that the Institute for International Criminal Investigations plays in the framework of accountability and criminal justice, as it plays an important role in independent and impartial support for the investigation of sexual violence and gender-based crimes and in supporting the prosecution of the perpetrators of these crimes.
She said that it is a precious step towards transitional justice for women in Syria, and Qatar helps in every possible way to ensure their success.
She warned against excluding young women from the peace-building process, stressing that youth are essential elements for building and maintaining peace.
She referred to the high-level global conference on comprehensive peace processes for youth that Qatar will host in the first half of 2022, which will discuss the inclusion of young women in peace processes and their meaningful participation, and how to build bridges between youth.
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