Women, Peace and Security

Lee Davies, Desk Officer Children and Armed Conflict, lee.davies@fco.gov.uk


The UK’s National Action Plan on WPS has priority focus countries where we seek to increase and promote women’s participation in peace processes. The UK has also hosted a number of peace-building events to promote this message, including the Somalia Conference in May [2017?], where women’s representation from Somalia and the Somali Diaspora was secured. The co-Chairs’ Declaration from the Syria Conference in 2016, co-Chaired by the UK, EU, Germany, Kuwait, and Qatar, recognised the role of civil society, including women’s organisations, as a key part of a lasting solution to the conflict and stresses the need for an inclusive political settlement.

At the World Humanitarian Summit, DFID signed all the UN’s Core Commitments on Women and Girls and made individual commitments to support these. DFID Secretary of State spoke at the high-level roundtable on Women and Girls. Baroness Verma spoke at events on the Call to Action and Every Child, Every Woman, Every Where. New Member States joined the Call to Action. UK’s call to put gender equality at the heart of 21st century humanitarian action was echoed by many at the Summit, with strong agreement on the need to go beyond protection to ensure empowerment in emergencies.

The UK’s Joint Analysis of Conflict and Security (JACS) has been updated to integrate gender throughout. Following the 2016 NSC (O) meeting on Women and Girls and the findings of the SU Gender Audit of all CSSF programmes in Africa, NSS has directed all NSC strategies to integrate gender. NSS Joint Programme Hub has distributed guidance to this effect and is monitoring all new/refreshed NSC strategies to ensure that gender is fully integrated.

The UK National Action Plan for the implementation of UN Security Council Resolutions (UNSCRs) on WPS is intended to strengthen the UK’s ability to reduce the impact of conflict on women and girls and to promote their inclusion in conflict resolution. It provides a framework to ensure that the provisions of UNSCR 1325 and associated Resolutions are incorporated into the government’s work on violent conflict. The implementation plan published on 11 December 2014 contains detailed information about the activities that we will be pursuing under each of the pillars in the 6 priority countries of the National Action Plan, with baseline and target data that we will use as a benchmark to assess the UK’s efforts on women, peace and security throughout the life of the action plan. The UK Government is currently working on its next NAP, scheduled for release in January 2018.

The UK is assisting NAP implementation projects in Iraq and Afghanistan. The UK also participated in an EU NAP development workshop in Dublin in April, as well as the first meeting of the WPS National Focal Points Network, which focused on NAP development and implementation.

The UK has participated in the OSCE NAP Academy (Vienna, September 16) which the UK co-funded; EU NAP development workshop (Dublin, April 17); WPS National Focal Points Network meeting (Alicante, April 17). The UK also fully participates in the EU Informal Taskforce on 1325.

Pre-deployment training is in place for all troops deploying on land facing operations from April 2016. This includes troops deploying on UN missions in Somalia and South Sudan. Implementation of Training Needs Analysis (TNA): inclusion of WPS in basic training and annual refresher training for all troops; development of gender specialist training for Gender Advisors (GENADs) and Gender Focal Points (GFPs) at Defence Academy. A communications strategy for better promotion of WPS within UK MOD has been developed, in liaison with the Strategic Communications and Diversity & Inclusion teams.