Cyprus is determined to intensify the efforts to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women and provide equal access to opportunities, including in the peace and security agenda, Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Andreas Hadjichrysanthou said on Wednesday at the UN Security Council open debate on Women, Peace and Security.

In his speech, Hadjichrysanthou said that almost 23 years have elapsed since the unanimous adoption of Security Council Resolution 1325, which was a historic moment as it was the first time the Security Council recognized the role of women in peace and security.

As we come closer to the 25th Anniversary of the resolution, it is imperative, he said, to have a stock taking on what we have achieved so far, but mostly where we need to be by 2025 for the Resolution’s full implementation.

Noting that despite positive steps and progress taken since the adoption of Resolution 1325, we are sliding back, he pointed out that it is undeniable that women and girls continue to be dramatically affected by armed conflicts, their rights are violated and they are excluded from decision making processes related to peace and security.

Furthermore, he said, we witness the rise of conflict related violence around the world, women and girls continue to be exposed to sexual and gender-based violence – online and offline – while at the same time these acts of violence remain in many cases unpunished.

“In that regard, we need to step up our efforts as States. Sexual violence in conflicts cannot be addressed in isolation, nor can it be separated from the status of women and the deeply rooted inequalities afflicting them. Perpetrators of these acts should be held accountable, and justice must prevail,” he stressed.

Saying that women are still excluded from peace processes and negotiating tables, he said that this is detrimental to the efforts to achieve lasting peace and prosperous societies.

“Without the full, meaningful, and equal participation of women in decision making structures and negotiation processes, this objective is at risk to remain unaccomplished. In this regard, more actions are needed at the national, regional, and international level for gender mainstreaming and the inclusion of gender issues in the global agenda” he pointed out. 

Referring to Cyprus, he said that the country welcomes all the 105 National Action Plans that have been adopted in relation to Resolution 1325, adding that Cyprus is one of these Member States since we have adopted our first National Action Plan in 2020.

The action plan, he added, to be implemented for the period 2021-2025 – consists of four pillars: dealing with women participation and empowerment; protection; prevention; and advocacy.

“Cyprus is determined to intensify the efforts to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women and provide equal access to opportunities, including in the peace and security agenda,” he stressed.

Concluding he said that as we move towards the 25th anniversary of the adoption of Resolution 1325, we have a lot of challenges to overcome, adding that it is our collective responsibility to amplify our efforts in achieving the full implementation of Resolution 1325 and to adopt gender sensitive approaches to create a more peaceful and prosperous world for all. 

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