No Women - No Peace: 20th Anniversary of UNSC Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security

On 31 October 2000, the UN Security Council adopted the Landmark Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. On its 20th anniversary, this dossier portrays women from 20 countries that make a difference in peace and security.

This dossier aims to present women from 20 different countries all over the world who are engaged in building peace in their countries, societies and communities. They work towards a more secure environment not only for women and girls, but for everyone. The portraits pay tribute to the dedication and engagement of these women who stand as representatives for many other women with the same goal.

At the same time, this dossier should serve as encouragement for other women wanting to become engaged in peace and security processes. It is also a call to further increase and strengthen structural participation of women in peace and security processes at all levels.

Women’s participation in peace processes is crucial for transforming and ending conflicts in a non-violent way. For women, peace and security is definednot only by the absence of violence, but also by the fulfilment of basic socio-economic needs. This ensures that peace lasts longer and is more stable. In short: No Women – No Peace.

Peacemakers: Portraits of women from 20 countries that make a difference in peace and security

Inna Ajrapetian (Chechnya, Russia)

Inna Ayrapetyan is a human rights defender from Chechnya, Russia.

 

Kristin Lund (Norway)

Kristin Lund is a retired Major General in the Norwegian Army. She was the first women ever to be force commander of an UN peacekeeping mission.

Palwasha Hassan (Afghanistan)

Palwasha Hassan is Executive Director at the Afghan Women’s Educational Center, working for women’s rights and women empowerment.

 

Claudia Paz y Paz (Guatemala)

Claudia Paz y Paz is former attorney-general from Guatemala, a lawyer, human rights advocate and university teacher.

Nivin Al Hotary and Sabah Al Hallak (Syria)

Nivin Al Hotary is a Syrian refugee woman displaced from Eastern Ghouta to Northern Syria, and human rights activist working on women's rights. Sabah Al Hallak from Syria is a women's rights activist.

Leymah Roberta Gbowee (Liberia)

Leymah Roberta Gbowee is a Liberian peace and women’s rights activist and 2011 co-winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

 

On 31 October 2000 the UN Security Council (UNSC) adopted unanimously the Landmark Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. It is the first UNSC resolution that mentions the specific impact of conflict on women and girls. It calls for including a gender perspective in all conflict and post-conflict phases in order to account for the needs of women and girls. Moreover, it demands the protection of women in conflict situations and the prevention of gender-based or sexualised violence. Additionally, it promotes women’s participation in all phases of peace-building and peacekeeping processes.

A lot has changed in the last 20 years: women are no longer seen solely as victims of conflict and war but also as actors in peace processes. There has been a female chief negotiator of a peace agreement, a female head of a peacekeeping mission and many women who are engaged on various levels of peace and security efforts. However, the potential that women have in engaging in peace processes and prevention of conflicts is still not sufficiently exploited, as women still have to struggle against patriarchal structures and attitudes. Very often, they face intimidation and repression when they get involved in peace and security, which many still consider as a male-only domain.