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Number of women participants in negotiations on Arms Trade Treaty increases to 22%

[Brussels, 15 July 2011] In June 2009, the General Assembly of the EWL adopted an Emergency Motion calling for support to be given to the gender perspective in the drafting of an Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), in order to act to limit the availability of small arms that are used to disporportionately kill women and children in conflicts. As the negotiations on this treaty continue, the EWL is pleased to see an increasing number of women national representatives. This also tallies with one of the major commitments of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 which is to ensure the greater participation of women in decision-making processes concerning peace and security.

The International Network on Small Arms - Women’s Network on 14 July 2011 issued the following statement:


The PrepCom on the ATT listed 116 women participants out of a total of 523 participants. That is 22%.

One of the major commitments of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 is to ensure the greater participation of women in decision-making processes concerning peace and security.

Estonia, Monaco, Saint Kitts and Nevis have an all-women delegation to the meeting. Jamaica and Luxembourg have 75% women participation. Guyana, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Trinidad and Tobago have 67% women participation while half of the participants from Barbados, Finland, Grenada, Guatemala, Mali, Mongolia, New Zealand, Serbia, Uruguay and Vanuatu are women as reflected on the list of participants.

The following States do not have women delegates on the list: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Angola, Belarus, Belgium, Benin,, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Croatia, Egypt, Fiji, Georgia, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Lesotho, Malaysia, Montenegro, Mauritania, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Togo, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Yemen and Zimbabwe.

Although Fiji does not have a woman in its delegation, Fiji spoke in the meeting about the need to incorporate UN Security Council Resolutions on women, peace and security in the Treaty’s principles, as well as the need to include in the criteria that arms not be transferred if there is a substantial risk that they will be used to commit gender-based violence. Kenya, Trinidad and Tobago and St. Lucia spoke about such need as well, in this third PrepCom.

During the 2nd PrepCom, the issue of gender has been brought up by many States in the discussions, among them Mali, UK, Spain, Nigeria, Norway and Australia, among others.

We are eagerly waiting for more delegates to champion this cause as arms such as SALW and ammunition facilitate widespread domestic violence, rape and other forms of sexual violence both during and outside of conflicts.

It is about time that women count.

by Jasmin Nario-Galace, IANSA Women’s Network

EWL Emergency Motion, June 2009 on Small Arms and thier Impact on Women

Small arms in the hands of men continue to kill women and children in disproportionate numbers. For the first time this year, the Global Week of Action against gun violence (15-20 June), under the influence of the of the Women’s Network of IANSA, called for the drafting of an Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). We call upon the EWL and its members to work for this treaty and support the working group on this, meeting at the UN in July 2009, to ensure the final draft contains a strong gender perspective.

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