Check against delivery
We are very grateful to Mozambique for organizing this important and timely debate on Women, Peace, and Security.
It is often the elected Members of the Security Council that are pushing forward important agenda items – as Germany did with WPS Resolution 2467 (on measures to prevent and respond to Conflict-Related Sexual Violence) in April 2019 or, related to the WPS agenda, Resolution 2538 on women in peacekeeping, which Germany co-sponsored in August 2020.
Since the adoption of Resolution 1325, 23 years ago, much has been accomplished:
o better protection,
o the integration of gender perspectives and
o progress in women’s full, equal and meaningful participation in the realm of peace and security.
However, as highlighted by previous speakers, a lot remains to be done. Progress has stalled in some areas and we observe regression in others. The Taliban’s violations of women’s rights in Afghanistan; rising levels of Conflict-Related Sexual Violence, for example in the Central African Republic, South Sudan and Ukraine; and the persistent difficulties in achieving equity of women in leadership positions globally – all underline the need for further efforts.
We all need to ensure that the frequent WPS references in statements at the UN and elsewhere do not just remain rhetorical, but are implemented in practice!
Let me highlight three avenues forward:
First: Member States must start at home. Germany takes this challenge very seriously:
o Our National Action Plan for the implementation of WPS from 2021 to 2024 prescribes specific objectives and measures along six work streams.
o Last week, foreign minister Annalena Baerbock, presented our guidelines on Feminist Foreign Policy. She highlighted that FFP is not a “magic wand” that can conjure change overnight. Rather it provides clear principles for using our existing toolkit in a smarter manner, and for cultivating a “feminist reflex”. To achieve this we will, among other things:
- Train our staff, create incentives, hire more women and promote multiplying networks worldwide;
- Ensure systematic gender budgeting towards equal access to resources for all genders and marginalized groups
- monitor our efforts and adjust where necessary in close coordination with our national and international partners, including other FFP advocates - hoping that more of you will join.
The Second avenue: We should reinforce existing instruments: Peacekeeping missions do important work towards ensuring women’s full, equal and meaningful participation in peace processes on all levels. We encourage senior leadership to expand political spaces for women and marginalized groups and we remain engaged as an Action for Peacekeeping Champion.
And the third avenue forward, we should continuously push the policy agenda: We must ensure that WPS is advanced in our joint policy documents, particularly the New Agenda for Peace. It is not enough for everyone to proclaim WPS a priority – we need to agree on how we will make it one.
Germany remains ready and eager to work with all of you to bring the Women Peace and Security Agenda forward!