Resolution 2118 (S/RES/2118 2013) on the situation in the Middle East, specifically Syria, was unanimously adopted at the 7038th meeting (S/PV.7038) of the
Security Council on Friday, 27 September 2013. The Council reaffirmed that the use of chemical weapons anywhere constitutes a threat to international peace and
security, as concluded by the United Nations investigation team in the report of 16 September 2013 (S/2013/553). The resolution endorsed the prompt destruction
of Syria’s chemical weapons program, with inspections beginning by 1 October. In the event of non-compliance, Chapter VII measures will be imposed. Further, the
Council fully endorsed a Syrian-led political process and international conference based on the Geneva Communiqué of 30 June 2012 (S/2012/523, annex).
Women, peace and security issues were mentioned on one occasion, regarding women’s representation in all aspects of transition found in the annex of the
resolution (Annex 9e).
Missed Opportunities to reference women, peace, and security include, women’s participation in the Geneva Communiqué of 30 June 2012 political processes and in
the international conference; the gender-specific impact of violence against women civilians; and the inclusion of a gender perspective in the access and delivery of
In relation to the recommendations put forth in the September 2013 MAP, the resolution’s record was inadequate. The MAP called for improved humanitarian
access, particularly gender-specific assistance, as per the UN Guidelines for Gender-based Violence Interventions in Humanitarian Settings; called for the full
participation of women in any negotiations; and the involvement of civil society. Encouragingly, the annex of the resolution called for women’s representation in
all transition processes, yet this could have been strengthen with gender-inclusive language in the operative paragraphs of the resolution. Similarly, the annex of the
resolution also called for immediate and full access to humanitarian aid, but failed to incorporate a gender perspective in the discussion of the distribution and access
to aid. Finally, civil society’s involvement in peace and security processes was absent from the resolution.
There was no previous resolution on Syria condemning the use of chemical weapons.