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Economic and Social Council
20 May 1999
Substantive session of 1999
Geneva, 5–30 July 1999
Item 14 (a) of the provisional agenda*
Social and human rights questions: advancement of women
Follow-up to and implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action
Report of the Secretary-General
1. In its resolution 53/120, the General Assembly requested the Secretary-General to report annually to the General Assembly, the Commission on the Status of Women and the Economic and Social Council on the follow-up to and progress in the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.1 Similar requests were contained in General Assembly resolutions 50/203 and 52/100.
2. In each of the three reports submitted in the course of a year, on a rolling basis, information is provided that is most pertinent to the respective intergovernmental body in order to facilitate its decision-making. The reports to the Economic and Social Council focus on facilitating the coordination function of the Council. The reports to the Commission on the Status of Women emphasize efforts undertaken by the Secretariat in support of mainstreaming a gender perspective and other follow-up activities. The reports to the General Assembly contain information from entities of the United Nations system, including specialized agencies and international financial institutions, as well as an analysis of activities undertaken at the national level, and by non-governmental organizations and civil society.
3. The present report is intended to update the information provided in the reports to the General Assembly at its fifty-third session, in 1998 (A/53/308) and the Commission on the Status of Women at its forty-third session, in 1999 (E/CN.6/1999/2 and Add.1). It focuses on developments related to the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action in intergovernmental forums reporting to the Council, in the regional commissions and in the Inter-Agency Committee on Women and Gender Equality since the submission of the report of the Secretary-General (E/1998/53) to the Economic and Social Council at its substantive session in 1998.
C. Other decisions of the Commission on the Status of Women
15. The Commission recommended three draft resolutions for adoption by the Economic and Social Council.
In a draft resolution on the situation of women and girls in Afghanistan, the Council would condemn the continuing grave violations of the human rights of women and girls in all areas of Afghanistan and urge all Afghan parties to end all human rights violations against women and girls and to recognize, protect, promote and act in accordance with all international human rights instruments. In the draft resolution on Palestinian women, the Council would support the Middle East peace process and the need for increased efforts to ensure that the peace process was directed towards the achievement of a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the region. In a draft resolution on a system-wide medium-term plan for the advancement of women, 2002–2005, the Council would invite the Secretary-General to prepare an assessment of the current plan (1996–2001) for consideration by the Council through the Commission in 2000 and to submit the plan for 2002–2005 to the Council through the Commission in 2001.
B. Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia
48. At its second session, held in April 1999, the Committee on Social Development, a subsidiary committee of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), adopted recommendations concerning implementation of the Fourth World Conference on Women and the integrated follow-up to global conferences.
49. During the period under review, ESCWA provided advisory services, upon request, to Yemen, Palestine, Qatar, Oman, Jordan and Lebanon in institution- and capacity-building for national machineries for women and non-governmental organizations concerned with women’s issues and gender equality. Technical assistance in the preparation of national reports on progress achieved in implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action for submission to the General Assembly at its special session in June 2000 was also provided.
Official Records of the Economic and Social Council, 1999, Supplement No. 7
(E/1999/27), chap. I, sect. B.