Arab women leaders and activists tackle the role of women in peace and security

Posted on: October 25, 2013, by :

Cairo, EGYPT (October 25, 2013)From October 26-29, over 100 Arab women leaders and activists will meet in Amman, Jordan, to participate in a regional training and discussion event on women, peace and security.

The event, hosted by Karama in partnership with the UN Women Fund for Gender Equality and the UNDP, is being held in response to the urgent and critical need to address women’s rights and roles in all stages of conflict, ensure their safety and protection under the law, and mitigate consequences of gender-based violence.

The aim of the event is to develop the capacity of women’s rights activists and leaders to engage with UN Security Council Resolutions (UN SCRs) on Women, Peace and Security. The sessions also seek to improve women’s political participation by strengthening their knowledge and awareness of these mechanisms, as well as their understanding of how to lobby for related reforms at the local, national and international levels.

Following the Arab uprisings, the issue of women’s political participation and women’s security have moved to the forefront as critical risk areas and priorities in conflicts and post-conflict transitions, especially given the worrying increase in the number of women assaults, kidnapping and rape. For instance, violence in Syria has led to over one million Syrian refugees living in Lebanon and three-quarters of these are women and children, many now vulnerable to prostitution, early marriage and sexual assault. These women and children also lack legal support, protection or access to psychological and physical rehabilitation. Meanwhile, countries in transition within the region continue to exclude women from critical decision-making bodies and processes – failures that highlight the lack of any real commitment to women’s engagement, participation and security

Given these, and other gender-related challenges, it is essential to activate international conventions (e.g. UN SCRs 1325, 1820, 1888, and 1889, and the recently introduced 2122), which advocate for women’s inclusion in peacemaking and reconciliation; promote women’s access to support services following incidence of violence; and promote criminalization of gender-based violence committed during times of war.

For further information on this event, please email Avni Shah at or Mayada Morsy at


1. Leading activists, academics, politicians and experts from within the region and outside of it will facilitate the training, holding plenaries and workshops on topics ranging from strategic communications to conflict resolution. The program emphasizes international commitments and will feature country presentations by women from Egypt, Yemen, Libya, Syria, Palestine, Iraq, Tunisia, Lebanon, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia and Morocco.

2. Karama is the Arabic word for ‘dignity’ and a growing movement working to stop violence against women in all its forms. In the wake of region-wide revolution, Karama continues to emphasize women’s political participation and involvement in decision-making and peacemaking, as well as women’s security and protection. For more about Karama, please visit its website at