It is time to take action to strengthen integration of development and conflict agendas from a gender perspective and ensure goals move from words to implementation and impact.
In 2015, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are set to expire. Although they have not yet all been accomplished, many discussions at the UN are addressing what should come next.
This week, the General Assembly's Open Working Group tasked with proposing the next generation Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is meeting to address issues of women's rights and conflict prevention.
Yet Post2015 SDG discussions have not adequately connected the dots between militarized gender inequality, conflict, and degenerative development. Further, the SDG focus on yet another set of goals distracts attention from implementation and impact.
Business as Usual Promotes Degenerative Development and Violence
With 82 per cent of the world's poor projected to live in fragile states by 2025 and 22 of the 34 countries furthest from reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) being conflict-affected, it is critical for issues of conflict prevention and post-conflict peacebuilding to be effectively integrated into the Post2015 sustainable development agenda and goals.
As current examples in Syria, Colombia, and elsewhere remind us, sustainable peace and development is not possible without the meaningful participation of women and integration of gender considerations.
Men with guns fail again and again to redress gender inequalities, address root causes of insecurity, and build the frameworks for development. Stronger attention is need in bridging the gaps between the peace, human rights, gender equality and development.
Investing in Women's Rights and Participation is Key to Sustainable Development and Peace
Yet coordination and integration has not become a reality. Post 2015 SDG discussions have as yet failed to build on the frameworks, mechanisms and indicators developed through the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda or adequately ensure gender considerations are integrated into issues of conflict prevention and development. This is not acceptable.
WILPF, in collaboration with the Center for Women's Global Leadership (CWGL), the Global Justice Center (GJC), and the International Civil Society Action Network's (ICAN) Global Network of Women Peacebuilders (GNWP) has drafted an open letter to the co-chairs of the Open Working Group (OWG) on SDGs and participating UN Member States asking them to strengthen the link between the development agenda and the conflict prevention and peace-building agenda from a gender perspective