Remarks by The High Representative for UNAOC
Mr. Miguel Moratinos
at the International Federation BPW of Spain
Side Event – Church Center, 2nd floor
Good afternoon everyone and greetings on International Women’s Day We celebrated women’s day on Friday but I believe we should celebrate women every day of every month of every year.
I feel very privileged indeed to be in the presence of all these remarkable women whose achievements would speak volumes. I would like to thank the International Federation BWP Spain for providing the opportunity.
March is a month that is dedicated to women here at the UN. Yesterday the Commission for the Status of Women (CSW) kicked off its 63rd session . The theme this year examines the link between women empowerment and the 2030 agenda for sustainable development.
This is a very timely theme as next year will mark the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Plan of Action and the 20th anniversary of the groundbreaking UN Security Council Resolution 1230 . It will the year of checks and balances. While progress has been made in closing gender gaps, significant inequalities between women and men and girls and boys persist globally, and women and girls continue to be marginalized because of the structural barriers and multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination that they face throughout their life cycle.
The full realization of the ambitious 2030 agenda hinges on achieving gender parity and empowering women and girls. This is the unfinished business of our time, and the greatest human rights challenge in our world.
Despite increased activism and advocacy that bore some fruit, there is ironically, a push back on women’s rights. We see a lot of loud talk about women’s rights but little action.
We need to change mindsets that perceive women and girls as a lesser individual, a weaker one. Changing mindsets begin at home and at school at an early age. Men and boys everywhere in developing and developed countries alike should be educated about the added value of women and girls as equal partners.
The organization that I lead, promotes dialogue, tolerance and respect of all religions, cultures and races. But I will not accept the misinterpretation of these religions or cultures by twisted minds that allege that they call for discrimination against women or girls.
As a true believer in the power, energy and strength women bring to the table, I have decided to add women as one of the areas of work for UNAOC, the organization that I lead. Goal 16 of the 2030 agenda of sustainable development is about achieving just, peaceful and inclusive societies. Societies will never be just, peaceful or inclusive without the full participation of women.
As a diplomat who spent most of his career in mediation, I also believe that women bring force, strength and new dynamics when they are included as mediators particularly in socio cultural affairs. Peace is durable when women are included in the negotiating teams.
Partnering up with women’s organizations in the public and the private sector is critical to forge our coalition and partnership system. I truly believe it is essential for women to be recognized and valued as active agents, team leaders and main actors in prevention of conflicts.
I hope that during my tenure I will be able to help strengthen the leadership, inclusion and vision of Women in Sustaining Peace Processes.
I thank you and wish you fruitful discussions in the next 2 weeks.