Subject: [fem-women2000 174] WA2000 CSW: Special Edition on "Regular CSW Wrap-up"- English - 03/03/00
From: lalamaziwa <>
Date: Sat, 04 Mar 2000 07:10:44 -0500
Seq: 174

March  2000 =ad New York CSW
WA2000 CSW: Special Edition on "Regular CSW Wrap-up"
Distributed by WomenAction

The 44th session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women consists
of two parts. The regular meeting of CSW held from 28 February completed
on 2 March 2000. Following information was shared at the NGO Briefing.

The session began with a vote for a new Bureau.  The new Chair is
Dubravka Simonovic (Croatia).  The new Vice-Chairs are Kirsten Geelan
(Denmark), Misako Kaji (Japan), Loreto Leyton (Chile) and Mankeur Ndiaye
(Senegal).  After the agenda and organization of work were approved,
Angela King, Assistant Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Gender
Issues gave a statement which noted both progress and deterioration in
the advancement of women.  In particular, she noted that the issue of
resources remains critical in addressing the challenge of continuity and
stability for the process of gender mainstreaming, particularly within
the United Nations itself.  Ms. Yakin Erturk, Director of the UN
Division for the Advancement of Women followed, with an explanation of
the documentation for the session.

General themes that emerged from Governments
Following Ms. Erturk, and through the end of the following day,
delegations presented statements related to the advancement of women and
follow up to the Fourth World Conference on Women.  Many delegations, UN
agencies and some NGOs spoke.  While a wide variety of achievement and
obstacles were noted, some general themes emerged.  

These included:
 * A strong affirmation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for
   Action as a fundamental document underpinning and guiding governments'
   and the international community's efforts to ensure gender equality. 
 * In addition, many mentioned their disappointment that the call for
   universal ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All
   Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) by the year 2000 (as
   called for in the Platform for Action) had not been met, and stressed
   the need for renewed efforts to reach universal ratification.  Many also
   welcomed the Optional Protocol to CEDAW and urged for the ratification
   and accession by governments to allow its early entry into force; as
   well as the inclusion of sexual violence as a crime in the statute for
   the new International Criminal Court.
 * In discussing the implementation of the Platform, many obstacles were
   noted.  At the same time, some delegations stressed that these obstacles
   are not insurmountable, but require consistent and, in some cases,
   increased political will. 
 * Delegations reported on new laws they have adopted, inspired by the
   Platform for Action.  In many cases, these laws constitute a framework
   for achieving gender equal societies. 
 * Frequently noted obstacles included:  the HIV/AIDS pandemic and the
   need for a deeper and more systematic understanding of the
   gender-differentiated impacts of HIV/AIDS; the need for more resources
   to support implementation, particularly for national machineries for the
   advancement of women; the uneven and gender-differentiated impact of
   globalization, which, as a number of delegations noted, has in some
   cases deepened women's poverty; the devastating consequences of armed
   conflict and internal displacement.  Many delegations also emphasized
   increased recognition of the extent and consequences of violence against
   women, while also noting the increased efforts to address it. 
 * Many delegations called for targets on gender to ensure stronger
   implementation of commitments.  At the national level, a number of
   delegations reported on the impact of affirmative action and other
   special measures put in place to assist in the process of building
   gender equality and ending discrimination. 
 * Some delegations also welcomed new information and communications
   technologies, while noting that the gains of these technologies are, in
   some cases, accompanied by new forms of exclusion. 

In looking toward the future of the CSW itself, a number of delegations
noted that the five-year review of the Platform for Action might also
include a review of the Commission itself, including its functioning and
mandate, bearing in mind the need for integrated and coordinated follow
up to major UN world conferences and summits of the 1990s. 

Common themes put forward by NGOs
A number of NGOs also spoke.  Common themes included:  
 * The importance of looking at the negative consequences of
   globalization on women and the urgent need for adequate responses; 
 * A call for more concerted political will, including through the
   commitment of resources for the implementation of the Platform for
   Action, and the protection of women's human rights; 
 * Greater attention to particular issues of the girl-child and
   adolescent women, including their sexual and reproductive health and

Panel on Emerging Issues
On 1 March, the morning session began with a panel on Emerging Issues,
trends and new approaches to issues affecting women of equality between
men and women.  Panelists included:  Ms. Dominique Meda, Inspector a
l'Inspection General des Affairs Sociales, Paris, France.  Ms. Meda
spoke about "Women and work including the emergence of new forms of work
and employment and reconciliation of family and work responsibilities;
Maitre Mame Bassine Niang, Ministere de la Famille, de l'Action Sociale
et de Solidarite Nationale, Dakar, Senegal, who spoke about "Life cycle
and access to resrouces including inheritance."  Ms. Charlotte Abaka,
Member of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against
Women, followed with a discussion about "Challenges to the
implementation of the Convention."  Next, Ms. Gillian Marcelle,
Chairperson of the African Information Society Gender Working Group
spoke on "Gender Justice and technology."  Ms. Madhu Bala Nath,
UNAIDS/UNIFEM Gender and HIV/AIDS Advisor spoke about "Women living with

Discussion followed the panel with comments by both government
delegations and NGOs.  NGOs stressed that the work of NGOs on these
matters is critical.  In addition, the NGO Youth Caucus drew attention
to the importance (and indeed historic) of their presence at the meeting.

Four Resolutions Adopted
Finally, during the CSW session, four resolutions were adopted.  These
 * E/CN.6/2000/L.2 - Release of women and children taken hostage,
   including those subsequently imprisoned, in armed conflict (adopted
   without amendments); 
 * E/CN.6/2000/L.3 - Situation of women and girls in Afghanistan, which
   was adopted with slight oral revisions.  (The adoption of this
   resolution in 1999 marked one of the few times that the CSW has
   adopted a country-specific amendment.) 
 * E/CN.6/2000/L.5 - Situation of and assistance to Palestinian women. 
   This was brought to a vote.  35 voted in favor, and one voted against.
 * E/CN.6/2000/L.6 - Women, the girl-child and HIV/AIDS (adopted with
   minor revisions.) 

The CSW also adopted a draft provisional agenda for the 45th (year 2001)
session.  Thematic issues to be addressed include:
 * Women, the girl child and human immunodeficiency virus/acquired
   immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS); 
 * Gender and multiple forms of discrimination, in particular issues
   related to racial and ethnic discrimination, xenophobia and related
   intolerance and discrimination based on age and disability.  (There
   will be a UN world conference against discrimination also held in

The process and preparation for 2nd and the 3rd Week (PrepCom)
Finally, while these issues were addressed by the CSW, much of the
action took place in the hallways and missions, as government
delegations, government negotiating groups (the Group of 77 and China,
the European Union and JUS-CANZ), and NGO thematic and regional caucuses
met to determine their priorities and editorial comments to
E/CN.6/2000/PC/L.1/Rev.1 - Further Actions and Initiatives to implement
the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.  The first revision
contains line-by-line recommendations by delegations and negotiating
groups for sections 1-3.

For information on the Governmental process, look out for "Earth
Negotiations Bulletin" which will cover official negotiations on a 
daily basis.

You will find the Daily News at
You will find the full texts of the documents at

Return to Index
Return to fem-women2000 HOME