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The women peace and security agenda through a feminist lens

As we celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8 to mark the many strides towards gender equality and advancement for women’s rights, we must continue our fight towards ending sexual and gender-based violence during conflict.

 

Being at the forefront of negotiations of international norms and treaties that set new standards for gender justice, as a representative of a small country – Andorra – showed me the power of access, the power to have a voice and the injustice of discrimination that comes with not allowing those who most need it to have a voice.

 

Throughout my career I made sure I would always remember what it means to be a woman from a small country, true to my background and feminist principles and I know that strengthening women’s leadership and supporting the work of activists is critical to the women, peace and security agenda.

 

As a diplomat and most recently as an activist, I have seen firsthand how Global Justice Center has fundamentally shifted the global conversation on issues relating to justice and accountability for sexual and gender-based violence in conflict.

 

Indeed, Global Justice Center embodies in my view the “Three Ladies” in Pizan’s The Book of the City of Ladies: Lady Reason, Lady Rectitude, and Lady Justice.

 

Global Justice Center gives Reason – a reason to believe women must play a leadership role in preventing mass atrocity crimes; it also promotes Justice by raising awareness of sexual and gender-based violence in conflict and by giving a voice and a choice to women; and, finally, GJC stays true to Rectitude by fighting the patriarchy inscribed in so many international laws and policies.

 

Now more than ever as multilateralism is under threat and women’s rights threatened to digress, it is important to apply a feminist lens into foreign policies and when implementing the women peace and security agenda, women are key actors in building resilient democratic societies, their rights and voices need to be kept alive and intact!

 

By Jelena Pia-Comella, Board member of Global Justice Center. 

 
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