Women in the Post-Conflict Process: Reviewing the Impact of Recent U.N. Actions in Achieving Gender Centrality
Santa Clara Journal of International Law, Vol. 11, p. 217, 2012
35 Pages Posted: 10 May 2013 Last revised: 3 Aug 2013
Date Written: 2012
The post-conflict terrain provides multiple opportunities for transformation on many different levels: protecting civilians, providing accountability for human rights violations committed during hostilities, reforming local and national laws, reintegrating soldiers, rehabilitating and providing redress for victims, establishing or re-establishing the rule of law, creating human rights institutions and new governance structures, altering cultural attitudes, improving socioeconomic conditions, and transforming gender roles and women’s status. This Article explores the effort to make gender central in the various legal and political regimes and processes in operation post-conflict, and specifically reviews SCR 1325 and its successor resolutions to assess their real contributions towards achieving gender centrality. Section I introduces the significance of gender in the conflict and post-conflict context, while Section II turns to the U.N.’s efforts to address gender in a series of Security Council resolutions, beginning with SCR 1325 in 2000, and evaluates the relationship of these efforts to concepts of gender security applied in the aftermath of conflict. Section III explores how the resolutions have been implemented, reviewing both country specific resolutions developed in an attempt to foster compliance with SCR’s, as well as the approach of various nations in preparing their national action plans (NAPs) that establish goals for putting the resolutions into practice. Section III then provides examples of post-conflict, field-based activities undertaken in the years after passage of SCR 1325 and some of its successors to illustrate the impact (or lack thereof) of the resolutions on peacekeeping, and humanitarian and post-conflict operations in the field. Section IV sets out recommendations for moving forward and concludes that while the resolutions may offer some major momentum in creating a normative framework for building gender concerns into most aspects of peacemaking, peacekeeping, and peacebuilding plans and processes, they have done little, as yet, to centralize women in these same processes.
Keywords: Gender and conflict, humanitarian law, international women's rights, post conflict reconstruction, gender and war
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