Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Statement by Vassily Nebenzia, Permanent Representative of Russia to the UN, at the open VTC of UNSC members "Women, Peace and Security"

We express our appreciation to Secretary-General Antonio Guterres for his assessments of the progress of women, peace and security agenda. We also listened very attentively to statements made by Ms. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN-Women; Ms. Danai Gurira, UN-Women Goodwill Ambassador; Ms. Nataliia Emelianova, woman-peacekeeper at UNISFA; and Ms. Zarqa Yaftali, who represents civil society.  

Your joint work contributes to achieving peace and security, and promoting the role of women in peacekeeping processes.

This month marks 20 years since the Security Council held its first open debate "Women, peace and security” and adopted resolution 1325. This year we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, which is in fact a roadmap for achieving gender equality and empowerment of women.

Open debate on this topic has become a tradition at the Council, raising much interest of states, providing a platform for discussing progress of resolution 1325 and ways of enhancing effectiveness of national, regional and global efforts at this track. We regret that this year the debate could not run in-person because of pandemic-related restrictions.

Over the 20 years since the adoption of resolution 1325, the Security Council has elaborated common approaches to the implementation of this and other documents on the issue “Women, peace and security”. They focus on four elements: prevention, protection, participation, and sustaining peace in situations of armed conflict. The necessary regulatory framework has been developed, and international cooperation established. However, there is one alarming trend – some states seek a “monopoly” on protecting women’s rights, and arrogantly turn down other countries willing to take part in dialogue on ways to improve the status of women, developing conceptual framework, and elaboration of proposals in this area.   

Involvement and direct participation of women in prevention and settlement of armed conflicts, as we heard first-hand today, provides for more sustainable and trust-based relations with the local population, helps prevent and investigate cases of violence against women and children, and adds to effectiveness of follow-up measures for rehabilitation and reintegration of victims. Russia partners with the UN in training foreign women-peacekeepers in certified training centers, including the one in Domodedovo, subordinated to the Ministry of Internal Affairs. As of today, the share of women among Russian peacekeepers in UN peacekeeping operations stands at appr. 17 %.

As pointed out in a UNSG report, the share of women participating in peacekeeping, including in the negotiation segment, grows steadily. Such dynamic is very encouraging. Here are some important areas to apply efforts to – women’s access to resources, technology, banking sector in the context of sustainable post-conflict recovery of states. We believe increased attention should be given to issues related to development of women, overcoming poverty, women’s access to education in countries that are in a situation of an armed conflict.  Family is a very special value, which needs to be protected.

In order to effectively promote women, peace and security agenda, we need to focus on concrete tasks and avoid duplication of efforts of the UN General Assembly, Human Rights Council, and the Peacebuilding Commission. In this regard, I would like to inform you of Russia’s intention to join the work of the Security Council’s Informal Experts Group on Women, Peace and Security, established in 2015. Our goal is a constructive contribution to the work of this panel on the basis of non-politicized, transparent, and democratic decision-making, needed to establish mutually respectful inter-state dialogue on this vital topic.

Security Council should act by collectively. We hope in the year of 20th anniversary of resolution 1325 the Council will be able to show its unity.

The Russian Federation has proposed to prepare an anniversary resolution of the Security Council, the draft of which we have been negotiating with the Council members this month. In the latest draft, which we already put in blue, we tried to accommodate delegations’ proposals to the most extent, including those we received in writing since yesterday afternoon. The draft both contributes to consolidation and promotion of women, peace and security agenda, and acts as a well-balanced document that anchors all of its major items. We hope Security Council will support this resolution. We will additionally inform you of the start of written voting procedure.