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As peacebuilders, all three women have been motivated by their personal suffering from the conflict. And in the communities, the damage lingers, they said. Damayanthi said her father disappeared during the conflict in 1989. “It doesn’t matter if we are Sinhala, Tamil or Muslim -- we have all suffered losses due to the conflict,” she said.
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Hanoi, Viet Nam – The Viet Nam Women’s Union discussed with Government, social organizations and international agencies today how it can help develop a national plan to achieve the United Nations goal of strengthening the role of women and women’s organizations and concerned stakeholders in promoting Women, Peace and Security (WPS) Agenda.
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Senior Indonesian Government officials today discussed how they could follow up on a joint report by National Counter Terrorism Agency and UN Women that showed that violent extremist groups in South-East Asia have been strengthening their campaigns by exploiting social hostilities towards women.
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Mallika Iyer, 26, an Indian-American, served until July 2022 as Director of Asia and the Pacific and Europe Programs and Humanitarian Action at the Global Network of Women Peacebuilders. The civil society organization, based in New York, provides inputs to the ASEAN Regional Plan of Action on Women, Peace and Security, to which UN Women provides expertise. ASEAN is the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Iyer is now studying at the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
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Chandrawathi Dissanayaka, based in Siyambalanduwa, in Uva Province of Sri Lanka, is the first and only woman elected as president of a Pradeshiya Sabha [local authority] in the country. In October 2021, Dissanayaka attended a series of “multi-party dialogues” that UN Women hosted as part of its project, funded by the Government of Japan, on Implementing the Women, Peace and Security Agenda in Sri Lanka.
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Government officials and members of civil society groups in Indonesia’s Aceh province have learned in a UN Women-supported workshop how they can work together to put into action a Regional Action Plan on Protection and Empowerment of Women and Children in Social Conflict.
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Twenty-six Vietnamese police officials started receiving training today on international policing and UN peacekeeping roles and responsibilities, particularly how to protect women and girls from sexual violence in conflict-related contexts. UN Women, jointly with United Nations Police Division’s Standing Police Capacity and Viet Nam’s Ministry of Public Security is organizing the three-day workshop (12-17 July 2022) in Nha Trang city, Khanh Hoa province.
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Young women cyber-defenders and representatives from Women’s NGOs, digital rights organizations and think tanks from across Southeast Asia came together at the UN Women ‘Women, Peace and Cybersecurity Regional Workshop for Civil Society’s Engagement’, which was generously supported by the Government of the Republic of Korea.
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Benedicta Golu, 37, is teaching young women and children in Bougainville island in Papua New Guinea not only how to play soccer but also how to help keep peace in their communities. Golu, a former midfielder for the Bougainville team and now a certified coach, had attended a training UN Women organized in October 2021 on how to promote peacebuilding, human rights and gender rights.
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Aileen U. Hualde, 47, is based in Maguindanao Province in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, in southern Philippines. She is a leader of the Teduray indigenous people and founder of the Women Organization of Rajah Mamalu Descendants, which groups women whose families were displaced by armed conflicts. Hualde was first trained on gender and peace advocacy through the UN Women’s Speakers’ Bureau in 2016, and she and members of her organization attended a Training on Quick Community Response Teams on 5-7 July 2022 in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato, the Philippines. The teams help people displaced by natural disasters and violent conflicts. The training was supported by STEP, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Peacebuilding Fund Phase 3, and UN Women’s project Empowering Women for Sustainable Peace, which is funded by the Governments of Canada and the Republic of Korea.
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In the wake of crisis, economic response and recovery plans often forget the needs of women and girls, hindering sustained peace and development. In Bangladesh, UN Women supports the Generation Equality Compact on Women Peace and Security and Humanitarian Action (WPS-HA) and is working with local partners to put recovery back on track by increasing economic security for crisis-affected women through grants and job training.
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Reti Khatun is a mother who lives in Kulpala village in Chuadanga, a district in southwest Bangladesh that is extremely vulnerable to climate change and long, devastating droughts in the summer. Her husband cannot work because of a disability, so she is the breadwinner of the family as well as caregiver. She used to clean houses for a living, but people stopped calling her during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Based on international standards, many policies have been put forward to ensure the safety of women and to address inequalities. However, implementation is lacking. If a woman goes to the police station to make a complaint, the system is such that they don’t often feel safe and protected.
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Myanmar’s population is facing a double crisis from the COVID-19 and the military takeover of February 2021, which is steadily wearing out their social and economic resilience.
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An international workshop to strengthen the capacities of female officers in leadership positions was held today in this city in Ha Nam province for 40 senior policewomen from northern provinces and Hanoi. The Department of Foreign Relations, Ministry of Public Security, hosted the workshop in partnership with UN Women.
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“Women and men play a multi-faceted role in peacebuilding. Violent extremism is a phenomenon that impacts everyone and men and women are equally vulnerable to being affected and recruited by extremist ideologies,” says Durr e Maknoon, Director General Outreach of National Counter Terrorism Authority, Pakistan (NACTA).
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Palu, Indonesia – Supported by UN Women and its project partner, the Asian Muslim Action Network (AMAN) Indonesia, activists and government authorities who believe that women can play important roles in the effort are devising gender-responsive ways to tackle the risks of violent extremism in Indonesia’s Central Sulawesi province.
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UNAMA is deeply concerned with today’s announcement by the Taliban de facto authorities that all women must cover their faces in public, that women should only leave their homes in cases of necessity, and that violations of this directive will lead to the punishment of their male relatives.
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Addressing and responding to sexual and gender-based violence is an integral aspect of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda. 46-year-old L.D. W Sanjeewani is a Chief Inspector of Police, serving in the Polonnaruwa Police Division in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka. She has over 25 years of experience helping survivors of violence.
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[Press release] The Elsie Initiative Fund for Uniformed Women in Peace Operations (EIF) announced today that Cambodia will receive funding to undertake a study to identify barriers to the deployment of women in the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF), to United Nations peace operations. Cambodia, the 25th highest troop contributing country to United Nations peacekeeping, currently deploys 766 military personnel, among which 14 per cent are women.