New York, 1 November 2023 (TDI): Renowned diplomat and advocate for gender equality and the US Ambassador to UN Linda Thomas, expressed her heartfelt gratitude to Ambassador Verveer and her esteemed colleagues for their dedication and commitment to advancing the cause of Women, Peace, and Security.
She also conveyed her appreciation to her Japanese counterpart and the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace, and Security, along with the Sasakawa Peace Foundation for co-hosting this momentous conversation.
In a candid and thought-provoking address, US Ambassador to United Nations, highlighted a persistent issue in discussions surrounding gender equality and conflict resolution. She began by acknowledging the rarity of gender-balanced gatherings in her line of work.
In addition, she emphasized that addressing this disparity is not only essential but also a collective responsibility. She made it clear that uncomfortable conversations are necessary to catalyze change. Such discomfort, she believes, can lead to growth and awareness.
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Furthermore, Ambassador Linda shared insights from her experiences in Afghanistan, where she met with Afghan women who stressed the importance of educating boys alongside girls. They recognized that educating both genders is crucial for achieving a holistic approach to gender equality.
Ambassador Linda also stressed the imperative role of men and masculinity in supporting the cause of Women, Peace, and Security. She underscored the necessity for men to step up, speak out, and take a more active role as allies.
Furthermore, The ambassador depicted that discussions on Resolution 1325 and Women, Peace, and Security often overlook the role that men can and should play in fostering a more inclusive and peaceful world. She called for increased pressure on men in leadership positions to support these vital issues, particularly in the context of peace processes and conflict resolution.
However, she argued that increasing women’s participation in peace and security processes benefits not only women but entire communities and countries. She called attention to the gatekeeping roles that too many men play, which hinder the meaningful participation of women and girls in peacemaking efforts.