Making it Binding - Arms Trade Treaty and SGBV

Friday, February 22, 2013

As we anticipate the commencement of the Commission on the Status of Women, PeaceWomen is leading WILPF's involvement and engagement. We have a large delegation of over 70 women from every region across the globe coming together to join WILPF's movement at CSW and to pressure relevant stakeholders and policymakers to address the root causes of violence against women. Our written statements, advocacy priorities and events are detailed on our CSW 57 website page. PeaceWomen interns and the rest of the team will also attend a large number of events related to women, peace and security; we will draft a report for our CSW monitoring. With 14 partners, we have drafted an oral statement specifically focused on the direct and indirect links between violence against women and access to arms. We stand united to call on States to recognize the connection and take action to strengthen the gender provisions for the upcoming Arms Trade Treaty. The statement further highlights the need to support women's full and equal participation in all other relevant peacebuilding and development processes to prevent violence.

PeaceWomen has partnered with several NGOs to advocate for a stronger draft of the agreed conclusions (the negotiated outcome document) of CSW. In the first draft of the agreed conclusions (dated Feb 8) there were serious gaps which at this stage can still be addressed. Based on the first draft, the key recommendations we are calling on States to enhance include language on: participation of women, arms and disarmament, women human rights defenders, and access to services for all. Furthermore, we are urging reference to the women, peace and security resolutions (i.e. reference to SCR 1325, 1820, 1888, 1889 and 1960). On the first Monday of CSW there will be a special Women, Peace and Security conservation circle from 2:30-4pm (on March 4th), for all NGOs to discuss the agreed conclusions and specific recommendations and advocacy strategies. All are welcome.

Focusing on human security, this month WILPF launched and participated in two campaigns both aimed at ending gender-based violence. On 11 February, we initiated a new web portal to call on negotiators of the Arms Trade Treaty to include a legally-binding provision to prevent armed gender-based violence. In this edition's articles we include information on WILPF's Make It Binding Campaign to include gender-based violence in the Arms Trade Treaty.

On 14 February, WILPF and PeaceWomen joined the One Billion Rising campaign against gender-based violence. We have included a summary article of WILPF members activities and actions. We danced, we struck, we rose! WILPF International coordinated a photo campaign. Check out our global members rising to end violence against women in pictures. Please view our website to see WILPF members around the world rising. WILPFers recognize the important connection between the Arms Trade Treaty and CSW's work.

In news, events and initiatives we feature Women, Peace and Security related material, which include a recent news article on India's approach to tighten laws. This edition of ENews includes an article on the status of implementation of Resolution 1325 in Palestine and Israel. We have also posted WILPF Palestine's statement on the operation pillar under initiatives.


CSW 57th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women

CSW57 will take place at United Nations Headquarters in New York from Monday, 4 March to Friday, 15 March 2013.


WILPF has a huge delegation of over 70 WILPF women from around the world participating in the 57th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women. We have the following countries represented by members/partners at CSW57: Nigeria, DRC, Costa Rica, Colombia, UK, US, Sweden, Canada, Japan, Australia, Pakistan, Lebanon, Morocco, Yemen, Tunisia, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Libya and international staff.

We are involved in many events including the special launch of WILPF 100 year Campaign on International Women's Day.

Click here for full WILPF CSW57 Statement.


WILPF is organizing and supporting numerous key events during CSW. WILPF members will speak at several of our events, joining us from around the world and sharing their perceptions on women's issues within their country's context. Events include panel discussions, movie screenings, and interactive dialogues.
Click here for a full list of WILPF's events and events WILPF is involved in at CSW57.

Please come join us, all are welcome.

Here are special WILPF Events:

MONDAY 4 MARCH 10:30 AM Salvation Army Auditorium, 221 East 52nd Street
"Investing in Peace? Violence Against Women, Militarism, and Budgeting for Security"

Violence Against Women: The Lethal Consequences of Arms. All are welcome. Tuesday March 12:30 Chapel, Church Center Untied Nations, 777 East UN Plaza
Speakers: Joy Onyesoh WILPF Nigeria, Annie Matundu WILPF DRC, Adilia Caravaca WILPF Costa Rica and President of WILPF & Nina Ferrer WILPF Colombia
Download Flyer

Powerful Voices - Women in the MENA Region talking Militarism, Security and Peace. Friday, March 8th, 1:15 PM - 2:30 PM, UN HQ Conference Room D, limited space, RSVP required to

Avenues to Accountability: Militarism, Trafficking, Exploitation and Justice. Saturday March 9th, 12:00 PM - 4:30 PM Fordham Law School, Lincoln Center, 140 West 62nd Street. RSVP Required for Entry. Rsvp to This symposium will be a platform to discuss accountability for perpetrators of gender-based violence particularly focused on reforming immunity and injustice as addressed in the movie "The Whistleblower."
Download Flyer

For the longer list of WILPF CSW 57 Events, see calendar on website, click here>>


PeaceWomen monitors events and resources specifically related to the women, peace and security agenda. We will share basic documents and reports, outcome documents as well as publicize parallel events.
For further information click here.
Review CSW 56 (27 February - 9 March 2012) through the WILPF Summary Report.

WILPF recommends the CSW and international community:

  • Protect women's human rights and promote the full implementation of all obligations.

  • Prioritize the prevention of conflict and invest in peace by developing programmes for economic, environmental, political and social justice.

  • Reduce Military spending

  • Stop selling arms and support renewed negotiations for an international Arms Trade Treaty, including mechanisms to ensure criteria preventing sale of arms where gender-based violence is perpetrated.

  • Make disarmament a reality and strengthen and implement disarmament agreements.

  • Integrate Human Rights, Women Peace and Security, and Disarmament frameworks.

  • Ensure and support women's full and equal participation in all peace negotiations, and processes.

Download this statement in PDF here.

Make It Binding-Arms Trade Treaty

WILPF has launched a campaign to include a legally-binding provision on preventing armed gender-based violence in the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). Take action today and join our campaign to guarantee the inclusion of prevention of gender-based violence in the Arms Trade Treaty.

We are calling for a specific criterion in the treaty to forbid states from authorizing an international transfer of conventional arms where there is a substantial risk that the arms under consideration are likely to be used to perpetrate or facilitate acts of gender-based violence, including rape and other forms of sexual violence. See our policy paper on including gender-based violence in the ATT for more details.

At the end of March 2013, all governments in the world will come together to finalize the negotiations of an Arms Trade Treaty. This is our chance to make sure that prevention of armed gender-based violence (GBV) is included in the treaty. As we all know, any references and focus on gender have a tendency to end up merely as a secondary criterion or tend to be forgotten altogether. It is therefore important that WILPF members and civil society push our governments to support specific language on GBV in the treaty.

It is now time to mobilize and make a difference!



Panel Series on Women, Peace and Security

On the 11th of February 2013, PeaceWomen in partnership with the Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination and Permanent Mission of Liechtenstein organized the fourth lecture in the series on Women, Peace and Security. We were pleased to host our featured speaker Raghida Dergham, Founder and Executive Chairperson of the Beirut Institute. Dergham underlined the pivotal role women play in reforming constitutions.

Rajhida also underscored the invaluable role of legislation in providing vehicles for underrepresented groups such as women, youth and moderates. In her view, if women, youth, secularists and moderates are left out of political participation, this will most likely result in islamists taking over the power vacuum.

Dergham made broad recommendations including the importance of reforming political parties by creating parties specifically for women. She also emphasized the need for institutional and constitutional reform to protect women's rights.

To view a summary for this event, please click here>>
For more information click here>>

WILPF and One Billion Rising Campaign

We danced, we struck, we rose. Moreover, WILPF International coordinated a photo campaign.

One Billion Rising is a global campaign organized by V-Day Movement to fight violence against women. The campaign's underlying message is that one in every three women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. This means that one billion women will experience sexual or gender-based violence.
On February 14th WILPF joined with many other organizations worldwide to take a united stand in the One Billion Rising campaign. Thousands of WILPF members danced, struck and rose. Moreover, WILPF International coordinated a photo campaign. WILPF's members from Australia, India, Lebanon, Nepal, Nigeria, Norway, Philippines, Switzerland, the UK and the US sent pictures describing their reasons for rising. The reasons are as numerous as the pictures but our message is one: We must end the violence against women and girls!

For the picture gallery click here>>

PeaceWomen rose with the slogan “A Woman's Body is NOT a Battleground”. We wanted to highlight the relationship between women, sexual violence and war.

Security Council's Open Debate on Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict

On Tuesday, 12 February 2013, the Security Council held an open debate on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict. After the debate, a presidential statement [S/PRST/2013/2] was drafted which expressed the Security Council's deep concerns on the immense suffering by civilians during armed conflict. Several resolutions reaffirmed by the presidential statement encompassed the role of Women, Peace and Security.

Protection from sexual and gender-based violence was commonly stressed during the debate. Most delegations mentioned that women and children are the target of sexual abuse and torture, but some speakers (including the Secretary-General) also noticed that sexual violence concerns men and boys to an increasing extent.

Not one of the nearly 70 speakers emphasized the active role of women in protection efforts despite the increased significance of sexual and gender-based violence to the peace and security agenda.

For more information click here>>