First Committee: Disarmament and International Security

UN Entity Layer: 
Main Committees

On 6 November 2012, First Committee adopted, without a vote, the draft resolution on women, disarmament, non-proliferation, and arms control. The resolution, A/C.1/67/L.35/Rev.1, was tabled by Trinidad and Tobago and co-sponsored by 64 other countries. This is the second time in the history of the General Assembly's First Committee that women and gender have been addressed.

The WILPF UN office worked to strengthen the text of this resolution and to ensure its adoption by the Committee. Reaching Critical Will's First Committee Monitor have featured articles on this resolution, which have been linked below. L.35/Rev.1 urges member states, relevant regional and sub-regional organizations, the UN, and specialized agencies to promote “equal opportunities for the representation of women in all decision-making processes with regard to matters related to disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control, in particular as it relates to the prevention and reduction of armed violence and armed conflict.”

The resolution urges states “to support and strengthen the effective participation of women in organizations in the field of disarmament at the local, national, regional and sub regional levels” and also calls on them to “empower women, including through capacity building efforts, as appropriate, to participate in the design and implementation of disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control efforts”.

It further requests the UN to assist states in promoting the role of women. Finally, the resolution requests the Secretary- General seek member state views on “ways and means of promoting the role of women in disarmament, nonproliferation, and arms control” and to report back to the next General Assembly session. The General Assembly's work on disarmament is conducted through one of its main committees: the First Committee on Disarmament and International Security.

The First Committee provides space for each state to discuss their positions on disarmament-related matters, and to work together to come up with compromises or to propose language or tools to better understand and approach the issues. It offers the opportunity for states to build consensus on the issues, to reach common understandings and principles and to agree on norms of behavior.

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