The withdrawal of the UN Mission to Central African Republic and Chad (MINURCAT) is due for completion by 31 December as per SCR 1923 (2010). Given the history of insecurity and human rights violations, there is great concern about a potential ensuing crisis for civilians. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees for example has largely depended on the Mission to provide security for supplies to some 3,500 Sudanese refugees at Sam Ouandja, in CAR. In eastern Chad, the UN has reported continuing human rights abuses, including sexual and gender-based violence. The Council is urged to ensure that:
- The protection of civilians and humanitarian assistance in places previously served by MINURCAT and elsewhere is addressed by the governments of Chad and CAR in order to protect civilians, in particular displaced women and girls.
- The Chad and CAR governments are held to account for any failure to deliver on their protection responsibilities.
- International partners are encouraged to focus on building the capacity of the CAR and Chad authorities to protect civilians and develop an independent and impartial judiciary.
As per SCR 1925 (2010), the Secretary-General is due to report to the Council by 21 January 2011 on progress on the ground and “with a view of progressively adapting” the UN presence in the DRC. In light of continuing protection of civilian concerns, including the persistently high levels of sexual violence against women and girls, and failure to ensure justice, it is not appropriate for the Council to consider any changes to the mandate of the UN Mission (due for renewal in June 2011), that would deprioritize the protection of civilians, until MONUSCO and other sources report a marked improvement in the situation.
The Secretary-General is due to report on activities of the UN mission and related developments linked to the promotion of security, stability and respect for human rights. The previous report (S/2010/562) did not include any assessment of the particular situation faced by women. The next report should provide information for example on women’s justice and refugee concerns. Little progress has been made in the prosecution of war crimes, in part due to lack of effective witness protection. There are also increasing numbers of forcible returns to Kosovo from UN member states, despite the particular risk of persecution for members from minority communities, victims of trafficking, and victims of war crimes, including sexual violence.
In his last report on the situation in Nepal (S/2010/214), the Secretary-General provided information on the numbers of women within the UN Mission (UNMIN), but no information on the situation for women in Nepal, despite recent political developments. The next report should include detailed information on: cases of sexual exploitation by peacekeepers/humanitarian workers and the effectiveness of instruments to address this; women’s involvement in the development of the new constitution, and how it will address their concerns; women’s role in the justice sector, both the formal and transitional justice processes; what human rights violations women are exposed to and what redress is available for them; and how DDR programs are taking into account the specific needs of female ex-combatants. With the mandate of UNMIN terminating in January 2011, it is important that in the transition, the following are addressed:
- Ensuring all female former combatants are provided with support programs (employment, skill training, reintegration etc).
- Ensuring survivors of gender-based violence have full access to information and conflict relief and recovery programs.
- Increasing resources to ensure basic medical and health care for survivors of conflict at the community level.
- Prioritizing women’s participation in all post conflict recovery programs, especially ensuring adequate representation in the constitution drafting process, the electoral system, the police and the judiciary.
- Instilling further measures towards ending impunity for crimes related to women and children, particularly sexual violence.
- Supporting special women’s hearings by Nepal’s truth and reconciliation commission.
The Council is expected to discuss a number of issues regarding the situation in Sudan, including monitoring the outcome of the referenda, the situation in Darfur and progress of the Doha peace talks. In any action it takes, including in any outcome document, the Council is urged to:
- Ensure that UNMIS is taking action to ensure sexual violence is prevented if there is an outbreak of violence around the referendum. Ensure that women are being given the space and meaningfully engaged in referendum discussions, consultations with women are being prioritized, and participation of women representatives in talks is being stressed.
- Ensure that women’s rights are integrated into political talks and outcomes related to citizenship, security, natural resources, and North/South border deliberations.
- Stress to the Chief Mediator and the Joint Mediation Support Team that concrete action should be taken to ensure women’ssubstantive participation in the Doha talks.
- For Doha, the Security Council should request that the texts of the agreement currently being discussed are reviewed by a senior gender expert, potentially provided by the UN Mediation Support Unit.
The last report of the Secretary-General on Timor-Leste (S/2010/522) failed to detail actions being taken in compliance with SC resolutions on women peace and security. In the next report the Council should request information on the post-conflict situation for women in Timor Leste, and the work of UN Mission (UNMIT) in integrating Women, Peace and Security matters within its activities. This may include gender training for the PNTL (police); and progress on gender mainstreaming.
In October 2010, the Security Council marked the 10th Anniversary of resolution 1325 on Women Peace and Security (S/PRST/2010/22). At this debate, Security Council members and more than 70 other Member States delivered statements, many of which included commitments on implementation of its resolutions on Women Peace and Security, and urged the Council to take steps to do the same. These commitments must be met. With the welcome adoption on 16 December 2010 of resolution 1960, which aims to significantly strengthen the UN’s monitoring and response to conflict-related sexual violence, the Council should ensure its full implementation of all five resolutions on Women Peace and Security, within its work, in particular in the renewals of all peacekeeping and political missions, and sanctions regimes.
The absence of specific reporting on women does not necessarily signify an absence of women, peace and security concerns. Member States should inquire as to any such lack of information. In addition to mandate-specific calls for information, the Council has determined that all mandate renewals and country reports must address the protection and promotion of women’s human rights (SCRs 1325; 1820, OP 9; 1888, OP 11; 1889, OP 5; 1894, OP 32; and PRSTs 2009/1 and 2010/8).