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UN representative to Nepal stresses women's key role in peace process
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08:59, November 30, 2007

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Chief of the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) Ian Martin Thursday pointed out a need for a review of the peace process including an assessment of Parliamentary declaration guaranteeing 33 percent of all political and civil service appointment to women.

Addressing a program on National Consultation of Women Human Rights Defenders organized by the National Alliance of Women Human Rights Defenders to End All Forms of Violence Against Women in Nepali capital Thursday, Martin said that women have key roles to play in maintaining the unity of the Seven-Party Alliance which remains fundamental to the success of the peace process.

Expressing solidarity with women rights defenders in the effort against violence against women on behalf of the United Nations, Martin said that women human rights defenders need to be protected from harassment as well as obstruction in the performance of their functions as they perform a critical function in the establishment of sustainable peace in this country.

Lauding women's role as human rights defenders and peace activists demonstrated during the decade-long conflict and the democratic transformation of Nepal, he said, "You have achieved a lot, and you have much more to do. UNMIN and the whole United Nations system in Nepal are committed to working alongside you in these efforts."

He also said that the women roles include women's active political participation as well the pursuit of gender equality, both of which are critical to building a sustainable peace process.

"Ultimately, it is the joint efforts of women from all sectors of Nepali society, working with men from government, civil society and communities that can turn the commitments of equality into reality for all Nepali women and girls," he added.

"By completing a frank assessment of the experience of the past year, the parties need to develop a new sense of common vision for the peace process, and a realistic and effective road-map of actions required for a successful Constituent Assembly election. To be effective, this road-map should include women in peace process bodies at the local and national level," he said.

Source: Xinhua

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