Statement by H.E. Mr. Jun Yamazaki
Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations
Open Debate on Women and Peace and Security
30 November 2012
Thank you, Mr. President,
I thank the Deputy Secretary-General, the Executive Director of UN Women and the Under-Secretary-General for Department of Peacekeeping Operations for their informative briefing. We also thank and welcome the participation of the representative from the civil society.
Japan welcomes the report of the Secretary-General (S/2012/732) which demonstrates the clear commitment of the Secretary-General to the issue being discussed today. We are very much aware that the Secretary-General presented “Working with and for Women and Young People” as one of the five priority agenda items of his second term.
We are very encouraged that UN Women, under the strong leadership of Ms. Bachelet, has been resolutely promoting the agenda of women and peace and security as one of its priorities. It is with great satisfaction to note that, during her recent visit to Japan, Ms. Bachelet had the opportunity to meet and exchange views with members of the Japanese civil society, the political leaders including Prime Minister, Foreign Minister and Minister for Gender Issues, as well as leaders of the private sector, the press and youth groups.
The security of women and girls is an indicator of peace and stability. In this regard, we take note that the Secretary-General’s report refers to the fact that Afghan women’s groups have voiced concerns over the potential for a peace deal to be made at the cost of women’s hard-fought rights. On this point, we would like to point out that, in July this year, Japan hosted the Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan which reaffirmed and further consolidated the international community’s partnership with the Afghan Government—a Partnership for Self-Reliance in Afghanistan from Transition to the Transformation Decade (2015 - 2024). Thirty Afghans from civil society, half of whom were women, were invited to the Conference. It should be noted that, the Tokyo Declaration, which resulted from the Conference, stressed the importance of the participation of civil society organizations and women’s groups in support of the peace process and the culture of peace and human rights in Afghan society in particular in light of the UN Security Council Resolution 1325.
Relief and recovery initiatives for women in conflict or post conflict situations are also key when conflict prevention efforts unfortunately fail. As an example, in close collaboration and consultation with a wide range of women’s civil society organizations in Sudan, Japan supported finding employment for women in poverty including widows, women in rural places and women with disabilities.
As to refugees and internally displaced persons caused by conflicts, Japan supported the efforts to prevent sexual violence in Ivorian refugee camps located in Liberia by providing lighting/electricity in common areas of the camps and vocational training that included awareness-raising activities. That support effort also included our support to establish a relief and recovery system including legal support and mental care to victims of sexual violence. In the Republic of Uganda, Japan implemented awareness-raising activities for sexual violence prevention in communities of refugees from neighboring countries, and over 10,000 people participated.
Japan, for its part, will continue to make its utmost effort towards the implementation of Resolution 1325 as we move towards the 15th anniversary of the adoption of the resolution in cooperation with our partners, and in particular, with women’s civil society organizations.
I thank you, Mr. President.