At the Open Debate of the Security Council on Women and Peace and Security
The Roles of Women in the Consolidation of Peace

26 October 2006

Six years after the adoption of Security Council resolution 1325, the time is again upon us to take stock of the progress made and renew our commitment to move towards realizing the goals set out in this important resolution. "Consolidation of peace" encompasses an endeavor and a process that requires a comprehensive approach involving all stakeholders and sustained international support, including the United Nations. Women play critical roles in such endeavor and process and the landmark resolution 1325 has contributed significantly to enhancing women's ability to fully commit themselves in rebuilding their community, ensuring sustainable peace, and preventing the recurrence of conflict. This has been and continues to be an essential pillar in the consolidation of peace.

I take the opportunity to commend all the efforts made by Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women, by DPKO, by UNIFEM and by all other development, humanitarian, human rights, advocacy agencies, and organizations and groups both within and outside UN system, for promoting the goals set in resolution 1325, while fully admitting that there still remain a lot that need to be done.

We welcome that in the Peacebuilding Commission, focusing on Sierra Leone and Burundi, the importance of integrating gender perspectives into peacebuilding activities is specifically and emphatically noted. We expect that the outcome of today's debate, along with useful suggestions, will be reflected appropriately in the work of the PBC, to further assist the implementation of resolution 1325.

In our view, the debate on the role of women in peace and security and implementation of resolution 1325 should inform and be informed by the concept of human security and the people-centered approach that it advocates. Promoting the empowerment of each individual and protecting individuals from threats to their safety and basic well-being is the ultimate goal of human security. Implementation of resolution 1325 should contribute to enhancing human security for women; it should promote institutional reforms which integrate the needs and priorities of women so as to strengthen their empowerment and protection.

As part of its efforts to promote human security in practice on the ground, Japan helped set up the United Nations Trust Fund for Human Security (UNTFHS) in 1999. During the past few years, the Trust Fund has supported over 160 projects in more than 90 countries and regions, and many of them have contributed towards the empowerment and protection of women and children. With that end in mind, many of the projects approved under the Trust Fund are implemented in partnership with NGOs and civil society groups active in this field. One example is a local NGO, Dushirehamwe, in Burundi, coordinated by Ms. Christine Miturumbwe, who has delivered a statement here today. Among other activities, Dushirehamwe is implementing a project that aims to help returnees and internally displaced women to improve their economic capacities, thereby facilitating communal reconciliation and coexistence between the local population and the returnees and IDPs.

Women's participation has enormous significance in ensuring the consolidation of peace and community reconstruction. Resolution 1325 provides the necessary framework and it needs to be implemented with all the vigor and all the support it deserves, and Japan intends to continue to do its utmost to contribute to that end.

Thank you for your attention.

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