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    Women, Peace and Security makes historic strides during AACS 2024

    Women, Peace and Security makes historic strides during AACS 2024

    Photo By Senior Airman Regan Enriquez | U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. Kenneth P. Ekman, U.S. Africa Command strategy, engagement...... read more read more

    A Women, Peace and Security panel made momentous strides during the 2024 African Air Chiefs Symposium held Feb. 26 to Mar. 1 in Tunis, Tunisia.

    This year, 30 Association of African Forces member nations voted to integrate WPS initiatives into the association, based on a proposal created in 2023.

    The WPS concept is centered on the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325, which addresses the impact of war on women and the importance of women’s full and equal participation in conflict resolution, peacebuilding, peacekeeping, humanitarian response and post-conflict reconstruction.

    Keynote speaker Gen. Birame Diop, United Nations Department of Peace Operations military adviser, emphasized the importance of WPS integration into military services.

    “It is important for us to undertake the necessary advocacy, for the decision-makers to be convinced of the relevance of having women at the epicenter of everything we do,” Diop said. “Participating in the promotion of gender mainstreaming and the implementation of WPS requires particular skills, and skills do not appear out of nowhere. Skills are developed with training and education.”

    The two-day panel attended by WPS representatives from 21 African nations provided African women an opportunity to share experiences and issues needing improvement, including common setbacks women experience in the military.

    Having a seat at the table during important discussions, and being able to participate as equals is necessary to advance women's meaningful participation, according to Capt. Babalola Edith, Benin Air Force air communications systems specialist and WPS representative.

    “Last year, during the AACS in Senegal, we were five women representing the WPS concept, now we are 21,” said Edith. “This increased participation of women is a witness to the commitment of our air chiefs to questions relating to women in the defense sector.”

    The implementation of WPS initiatives will provide more opportunities for training, a platform to address common challenges women face in their respective air forces and the integration of gender focused approach, said Tunisian Air Force Association of African Air Forces WPS lead Maj. Ibtihel Youssef.

    “The vote in favor of integration of Women Peace and Security is an event that will be written in the history of AAAF,” said Youssef. “As the WPS lead for the Tunisian military and this event I feel like I did it right, so this is a huge achievement.”

    During AACS, a diverse range of workshops and several cultural outings were provided to WPS representatives, giving opportunities for strengthening partnerships and discussing important matters regarding WPS.

    Representatives from Benin, Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Tunisia, United States and Zambia were able to discuss women's empowerment and the importance of women’s active and equal involvement in military strategies and decisions in their respective countries.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 03.01.2024
    Date Posted: 03.02.2024 04:37
    Story ID: 465183
    Location: TUNIS, TN

    Web Views: 167
    Downloads: 2

    PUBLIC DOMAIN