Draft Recommendation

Leveraging Women’s Equal Participation during and after Conflicts and Revolutions
from the onset

The Conference of International Non Governmental Organisations of the Council of Europe

Recognising the major role of women in the context of the current revolution of the Arab world for liberty, universal human right and democracy and referring to their motto “We were together in the streets; we will not go home now”

Referring to and supporting the Statement of participants at Karama’s May 2011 meeting in Cairo in which women and women’s organisations of 11 Northern African and Arab States took part

Referring to international human rights law, in particular to Convention on Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security and subsequent SC resolutions 1625, 1674, 1820, 1882 and 1888

Referring to Council of Europe’s values and commitments as laid down in European Treaties, Resolutions, Recommendations and Action Plans

Referring to the INGO Conference’s first Declaration on the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia and Presidential statement of January 2011

Referring to the INGO Liaison Committee Recommendation on the situation in Kosovo of June 2008

Being aware of the long lasting negative effects on Kosovar women’s rights due to the exclusion of women at the onset from political participation as described in the March 2011 report of FRIDE * (see footnote)

Recognising the urgency of getting women included in the decision making structures from the onset

Being aware that Egyptian women were excluded from the newly created Committee for Constitutional Reform and that only one female Minister was appointed in the Interim Government.

The Conference of International Non Governmental Organisations of the Council of Europe

Recalls that gender equality as a universal value and fundamental human right is recognised all over the world as the cornerstone of democracy and development

Underlines the urgency of getting women included in the decision making structures from the onset in all current processes of democratic transition, notably in the Arab world

Confirms their belief that women’s participation from the onset is essential in democratic processes and conflict resolution by introducing alternative perspectives and results in enhanced security and stability and could counteract fundamentalist approaches

Rejects the notion that women’s participation is at present an ill affordable “luxury” as expressed in an interview by a EU Representative in Kosovo

Welcomes the decision of a 30% quota for women in the upcoming elections in Tunisia; at the same time
being aware that such a quota is only the first step in achieving gender equality in decision making,

…………
* “Building a State that works for women: Integrating gender into post-conflict state building”
March 2011 report by Fundación par las Relaciones Internacionales y el Diálogo Exterior

The Conference of International Non Governmental Organisations of the Council of Europe

Supports the wishes, demands, priorities and commitments of Women and Women organisations particularly in countries of ex-Yugoslavia, in Northern African and Arab countries, notably

The Conference of International Non Governmental Organisations of the Council of Europe

Urges the International Community, particularly the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers, Parliamentary Assembly, Venice Commission and the European Union

The Conference of International Non Governmental Organisations of the Council of Europe

Urges Media