The UAE has reaffirmed its commitment to advancing the Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) agenda by officially joining the WPS Chiefs of Defence Network (CHODS) on Monday, December 9th, under the support and patronage of Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, WAM reported.
The WPS CHODS network exists to ensure the participation of women in all fields and to enhance their roles at the local, national, and regional levels, as well as to implement UN Security Council Resolution 1325, which states that all member states should advocate a role for women in peace processes, protect women from gender-based violence, and consider the needs specific to women refugees and ex-combatants.
Pilot Staff-Brigadier Sheikh Ahmed bin Tahnoun bin Mohammed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the UAE National Service and Reserve Authority, spoke of the UAE’s constant readiness to support women, peace, and security, as well as the involvement of Emirati women in UN peacekeeping operations.
He added that the UAE possesses a significant history of involving women in military operations, while Noura Al Suwaidi, Director of the GWU, mentioned that joining the network is the result of the support for women from the country’s leadership.
Dr Moza Al Shehhi, Executive Director of the UN Women-UAE Liaison Office for the Gulf Cooperation Council, has confirmed that the network is a priority of UN Women, which has collaborated with the UAE government in launching a successful training programme related to women in peace and security.
The UN Women training programme was also hosted by the Khawla Bint Al Azwar Military School in Abu Dhabi, which provided training for women in the areas of security and peace, with the participation of 134 women from seven Arab countries, namely Egypt, Sudan, the UAE, Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen, according to WAM.
The programme’s structural targets are focused on encouraging the participation of women in UN peacekeeping operations, increasing the number of women qualified to work in the military, and establishing networks to support women working in the military and peacekeeping sectors.
The relationship between the UAE and UN Women extends further in history, as evidenced by the statement of Saod Rashid Al Mazroui, member of the UAE delegation to the United Nations, in 2017 at the Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace, and Security, when he highlighted the UAE’s partnership with UN Women as a key part of its strategy to implement the WPS agenda. He also announced a contribution of $15 million to support UN Women’s critical work over the next three years, according to the United Nations.
Following the progress and success that accompanied the programme’s first edition in 2019, the second edition is due to take place in Abu Dhabi in January 2020.