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


WOM/1331
11 March 2002

Commission on Status of Women
Forty-sixth Session
9th Meeting (PM)

WOMEN’S COMMISSION HEARS INTRODUCTION OF DRAFT TEXTS CONCERNING AFGHANISTAN, PALESTINE, HIV/AIDS, HOSTAGES, GENDER POLICIES


The Commission on the Status of Women this afternoon heard the introduction of five draft resolutions and one draft decision, including a United States-led text on the situation of women and girls in Afghanistan, and another, sponsored by the "Group of 77” developing countries and China, on assistance to Palestinian women.

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Under a revised draft on Palestinian women, the ECOSOC would call upon the concerned parties, as well as the international community, to ensure the immediate resumption of the peace process. It would also call for tangible improvements in the difficult situation on the ground and living conditions faced by Palestinian women and their families. It would demand that Israel, the occupying Power, comply fully with the relevant human rights declarations and treaties, in order to protect the rights of Palestinian women and their families.

The representative of Venezuela, on behalf of the Group of 77 and China, introduced the revised draft saying that that was similar to last year’s text with two additional paragraphs. The text reflected the deterioration of the situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, including Jerusalem, and noted that the occupation was the greatest obstacle to the advancement of Palestinian women, he said.

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The Commission will meet again at 3 p.m. Thursday, 14 March, to take action on the above texts.



Background

The Commission on the Status of Women met this afternoon to hear the introduction of a series of draft resolutions on the following: release of women and children taken hostage in armed conflicts; the situation of and assistance to Palestinian women; women and girls and HIV/AIDS; situation of women and girls in Afghanistan; mainstreaming a gender perspective in the United Nations. It also had before it a draft decision submitted by the Chairman on the election of the Bureau.

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Under the draft on Palestinian women (document E/CN.6/2002/L.2), sponsored by Venezuela, on behalf of the "Group of 77" developing countries and China, the Commission would recommend to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) that it call upon the concerned parties, as well as the international community, to ensure the immediate resumption of the peace process. It would also call for measures to tangible improvements in the difficult situation on the ground and living conditions faced by Palestinian women and their families.

In that context, the Commission would demand that Israel, the occupying Power, comply fully with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the regulations annexed to The Hague Convention of 1907 and the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, in order to protect the rights of Palestinian women and their families.

It would call on Israel to facilitate the return of all refugees and displaced Palestinian women and children to their homes and properties, in compliance with the relevant United Nations resolutions. It would urge Member States, financial organizations, non-governmental organizations and other relevant institutions to intensify their efforts to provide financial and technical assistance to Palestinian women, especially during the transitional period.

Further, the Commission would be asked to monitor and take action with regard to implementation of the Nairobi Forward-looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women, the Beijing Platform for Action, and the special session of the General Assembly entitled "Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the twenty-first century."

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Introduction of Texts

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MILOS ALCALAY (Venezuela), on behalf of the Group of 77 and China, introduced a draft resolution on Palestine women (E/CN.6/2002/L.2), saying it was similar to last year’s text with two additional paragraphs. The text reflected the deterioration of the situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, including Jerusalem, and noted that the occupation was the greatest obstacle to the advancement of Palestinian women.

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