New York, NY
The United Nations Security Council has not sufficiently addressed the needs of refugee women and girls in its work on Resolution 1325 on Women Peace and Security, the Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children says. More must be done to ensure that refugees are included in the realization of the Resolution among conflict affected populations.
The implementation of Resolution 1325 must address all women affected by war; up to this point, refugees have not been systematically included in the Council’s work to promote the Resolution,” says Ramina Johal, senior coordinator, protection and participation. “On this, the fifth anniversary of Resolution 1325, the time for action on refugees is now.”
Implementation of the Resolution means that women should be included in a broad range of decision making on issues that affect their lives. “All women affected by conflict must be included in issues beyond the peace table,” Johal says. “Refugee women must be allowed to participate in humanitarian assistance, such as food delivery, as well as in program design and monitoring, for example. The Security Council must push UN agencies to ensure that this happens.”
The Security Council should also urge countries that host refugees, regional UN bodies and member states to better enforce the Resolution’s call to address the safety and security of refugee camps. “Discussion and coordination of ways to make refugee camps safer must go beyond the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in order to be most effective,” says Johal. “The Security Council has a responsibility to make this happen.”
The Resolution also calls for member states to address the special needs of women in return and reintegration once conflict has ended. In order to better ensure the safety of refugees once they repatriate, the Security Council and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations must reach out to refugee women and girls before they return to find out what they need to make sure that their return is safe and sustained.