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Press Release
UNITED NATIONS
Department of Public Information · News Coverage Service · New York


Fifty-seventh General Assembly
Third Committee
12th and 13th Meetings (AM & PM)
GA/SHC/3696
9 October 2002




WOMEN’S VOICES, PERSPECTIVES MUST BE AT HEART OF EFFORTS TO CRAFT VISION
OF HUMAN SECURITY, THIRD COMMITTEE TOLD, AS DEBATE ON WOMEN OPENS


As the Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) opened its annual debate on matters related to the advancement of women, the Executive Director of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) underscored that women's voices, perspectives and contributions must be at the heart of efforts to craft a vision of human security, build a global dialogue for peace and generate alternatives to war and violence.

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In the general debate on the advancement of women, several speakers over two meetings today stressed that gender equality was an essential element, and a prerequisite, for the realization of social and people-centred sustainable development.  Other speakers agreed that the empowering of women or lack thereof was directly linked to poverty.  However, they stressed that the persistence of poverty contributed to the failure of some governments to address the problems of women. 

In addition to discrimination and widening disparities in employment, education and health services, it was also felt that women suffered from the effects of armed conflict, foreign occupation and terrorism.  Without the elimination of poverty and the containment of conflicts, it would be difficult to significantly improve their status, they said.  Several delegations also expressed concern for the situation of women and girls in the occupied Palestinian territories, ...  

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Interactive Dialogue

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AMNEH HAMEED AL ALI (United Arab Emirates) ...

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The United Arab Emirates condemned all practices undertaken by Israel in the Palestinian occupied territories, she said.  The international community and other concerned bodies were asked to come up with comprehensive solutions by peaceful means to put an end to the suffering of the Palestinian people.  On the national front, the United Arab Emirates attached great importance to the advancement of women as well as the enhancement of their role in economic, social and human development.  The Government had enacted a number of laws to guarantee the legitimate rights of women, including the protection of women against various forms of exploitation.

MRS. ALMALKI (Qatar) ...

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Qatar condemned any form of violence against women.  The phenomenon of trafficking was particularly disturbing.  The tenets of Islam prevented any type of exploitation of or violence against women, she said.  She referred to the situation of women in the Palestinian occupied territories, and called upon the international community to ensure advancement for all women, without any selectivity.

ABDULMALIK AL-ERYANI (Yemen) ...

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Yemen expressed concern for the dire humanitarian situation of women and girls in the Palestinian occupied territories.  He urged the international community to do its utmost to ensure that their human rights were respected.  Their social development could not be ensured as long as they lived under occupation.

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