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Impasse at Commission on Status of Women “deeply regrettable”

UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet comments on the ending of the 56th session of the Commission on the Status of Women without agreed conclusions.

Impasse at Commission on Status of Women “deeply regrettable”

[From UN-Women] During this 56th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, we have witnessed passionate and dynamic discussion with a very high level of participation from governments and civil society.

Unfortunately we have also witnessed an inability to reach consensus on the agreed conclusions on our priority theme, empowering rural women. We have come to an impasse, which is deeply regrettable.

This situation is unfortunate and I would like to express disappointment, disappointment that is shared by many women around the world, especially rural women and girls to whom this session was dedicated.

The discussions during the past two weeks gave us hope that stakeholders were ready to provide both priority attention and much needed resources to further women’s empowerment and gender equality in all its dimensions, including sexual and reproductive health, and access to technology, and other important areas.

I sincerely hope that despite the failure to adopt agreed conclusions Member States will live up to their commitments and responsibilities to improve rural women’s and girls’ lives in all dimensions and ensure their rights.

UN Women stands ready, together with our partners in the UN system, to empower rural women, to provide strong and coherent support to turn the commitments that delegations have mentioned in this session and that remain despite the lack of agreement, into tangible results for women on the ground.

During the session, delegations adopted a number of resolutions on vital matters such as eliminating maternal mortality and morbidity, the key role of indigenous women, and gender equality and the empowerment of women in natural disasters.

I would like to express the hope that we move forward guided by the consensus that has been reached in international agreements over many years regarding women’s rights, as articulated in the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the Beijing Platform for Action, the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development, and other agreements.

Tipo de documento: 
Opinion Piece
Michelle Bachelet


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Impasse @CSW: "traditional values" vs. women's human rights

Of particular concern is that apparently one of the obstacles to reaching a consensus was that some governments want to safeguard “traditional values at the expense of human rights and fundamental freedoms of women. As many of us know “traditional values” are often used as an argument against equal rights for women, and traditional values can severaly discriminate against women.

As the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions clearly states: “‘No one may invoke the provisions of this Convention in order to infringe human rights and fundamental freedoms as enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights or guaranteed by international law, or to limit the scope thereof (Principle 1)”

Please see the page of the Asia-Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development for a statement by feminist and women’s organisations on the failure of the CSW to come to agreed conclusions:…

Sign on to Say NO to “traditional values” over women’s rights!

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