The Council is expected to discuss the situation in the Central African Republic (CAR), where civilians continue to bear the brunt of the conflict, as inaction on the part of the Security Council has allowed exacerbation of the human rights and humanitarian crisis. In its discussion of the report on the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in the Central African Republic (BINUCA), the Council should seriously consider taking steps to ensure accountability and the protection of civilians to curb the human rights violations and abuses now taking place in CAR. The Council should ensure its actions address women’s protection concerns and overcoming barriers to women’s participation, particularly by supporting local civil society efforts to develop coherent strategies to promote women’s political participation. The Council should press the CAR government to ensure conditions are restored to enable the UN and other international actors to resume work in service provision and human rights monitoring through the BINUCA Human Rights and Justice unit. The Council should inquire into accountability for atrocities committed by the LRA, including efforts being made to ensure justice systems are established and LRA leaders are apprehended, inter alia transfer to the ICC of those persons under arrest warrants by the Court. Finally, there should be concrete efforts made to provide technical assistance and capacity building on the issue of human rights as a component of BINUCA’s work in the country.
In its discussions regarding the forthcoming report on the UN mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), the Security Council should ensure the report includes the following:
- Information, trends, and analysis on women’s participation in political, economic, and security policy in Haiti, including legislative and judicial reform efforts in the country;
- Review access to services for survivors of gender-based violence, and an assessment of how to improve gaps in services and information about these services;
- Assessment of proper follow-up when cases of gender-based violence are identified;
- In preparation for pending elections, assessment of the specific security needs of potential female candidates and voters;
- Assessment gender-sensitive impacts of cases of forced removal /displacement of camps;
- Analysis of the current violence against LGBT communities, and assessment of government response;
- Assessment of the efficacy of patrols and recommendations to improve security for women and girls in the camps, including consultation with women and girls living in the camps; and
- Updates and assessment of the DPKO Guidelines for Integrating a Gender Perspective into the Work of United Nations Military in Peacekeeping Operations and monitor implementation across all forces in the mission.
In its renewal of the mandate of the UN mission in Lebanon (UNIFIL), the Council should address the role of the mission in addressing the spill-over effects of Syria’s intensifying conflict on Lebanese civilians by reconsidering operations and deployment in border areas in order to fill the security vacuum which contributes to ongoing human rights. This includes the issue of cluster bombs and other ordnance which continue to pose dangers to Lebanese civilians, including women and girls. The Council should also ensure that peacekeepers, national forces, and police receive comprehensive gender-specific awareness training. UNIFIL’s mandate should support women’s involvement at all stages of peace processes in the region, including in upcoming meetings of decision-makers and undertake capacity-building for civil society organizations to engage all aspects of conflict resolution processes.
In its discussion of the forthcoming Secretary-General’s report on the UN mission in Liberia (UNMIL), the Council should ensure the report provides information on progress in developing the capacity of Liberian institutions (including governmental branches, the army, and police) with regard to issues of gender, sexual and gender-based violence, and sexual exploitation and abuse. The report should include the following: UNMIL’s assessment of its own initiatives to sensitize and develop the capacity of its personnel, including peacekeepers and UNMIL office staff, on these issues; the current status of human rights in Liberia, including weaknesses of rule of law institutions, economic insecurity, and the continuing limited access to social services, particularly for women; and the progress of and challenges to the Liberian National Police Gender Unit, including ongoing adequate gender training, and logistical and equipment support. Council members should review the report for information on education and vocational training for women and girls associated with fighting forces in reintegration efforts; full access to post-conflict relief and recovery programs for survivors of gender-based violence; and the prioritizing of women’s participation in all post-conflict recovery programs, especially their representation in the constitution-drafting process, the electoral system, the police, and the judiciary. The report’s assessment of progress on the transitional benchmarks should include specific and comprehensive gender analysis.
The Security Council’s discussion on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question, should focus on the reduction of indiscriminate attacks harming civilians in both Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and on upholding accountability for violations of human rights and crimes under international law. Member States, including Council members, should ensure that any outcome of this debate commit to concrete steps to promote the role of women in any peace process, and to end violence targeting women and girls, including violations that severely harm women and girls, including demolition of homes, and denial of adequate access to education and healthcare through restrictions on building schools, clinics, and roads in “Area C” of the West Bank.
The Council is expected to hold an open debate on protection of civilians, with a particular focus on international humanitarian and human rights law. The debate should include a substantive discussion of the promotion and protection of women’s rights, as detailed in the protection of civilians Aide Memoire PRST/2010/25, particularly section III. Member State interventions, including those by Security Council members, should detail concrete steps to ensure accountability for these obligations, through support of: women’s civil society organizations; women’s participation in all levels of decision-making regarding protection strategies and conflict resolution processes; and access to justice, particularly when international humanitarian and human rights laws are abrogated.
Abyei / South Sudan / Sudan
The Council is expected to receive the most recent report on the UN mission in Abyei (UNISFA) and discuss the status of compliance in regards to SCR 2046 (2012). The report should include gender analysis on security sector reform, rule of law, and peacebuilding, and provide specific information on humanitarian concerns, efforts to address violations of women’s rights, including sexual violence, and ending impunity for these crimes. The Council should further call for the full representation of women in all aspects of cross-border efforts, including as chairs and members of committees, and women’s organizations are consulted and part of all enforcement mechanisms. There should be continued follow-up regarding gender training for security forces, and the status senior gender expertise for UNISFA. Finally, the Council should seek to gain a wide variety of perspectives on the situation, particularly regarding cross-border initiatives, by hearing from key civil society organizations who are active on the issue.
In its regular work, the Council should ensure that all country reports and mandate renewals evaluate the level of protection and promotion of women’s human rights, as per SCRs 1325, 1820 (OP 9), 1888 (OP 11), 1889 (OP 5), 1960 (OPs 6, 13), and 2106 (OPs 5, 6). Member States should inquire about any lack of such reporting.