Subject: [fem-women2000 263] ACTION NEEDED NATIONALLY NOW ON BEIJING +5
From: lalamaziwa <>
Date: Tue, 30 May 2000 13:41:09 +0900
Seq: 263


>> from Center for Women's Global Leadership 
>> The Status of the Document: 
>> The negotiations during the most recent informals are going extremely slowly
>> and there is contention even over things that were agreed in Beijing.ハ
>> Therefore not much has been agreed to. It is not clear what progress can be
>> made by the time of the UN General Assembly Special Session (which is only a
>> week away). The process is now jeopardizing the consensus reached at Beijing
>> five years ago. 
>> What is happening: The EU and JUSCANNZ have their positions ready but
>need to
>> be encouraged to defend Beijing language and women s human rights more
>> assertively.ハ The G77 has agreed on many parts of the document, but is no
>> longer speaking as a bloc. G77 countries have begun to take national
>> positions on the paragraphs they had not reached agreement on by May 22nd.
>> Many of the progressive Latin American and Caribbean countries (Bolivia,
>> Brazil, Chile, Peru, Colombia, Mexico, Ecuador Venezuela, El Salvador and
>> Guatemala) are now speaking together and have identified themselves as SLAC
>> (Some like minded Latin American and Caribbean countries). They and a few
>> other governments are working arduously to produce a strong document but
>> are being opposed by a very vocal minority who want to weaken the Platform.
>> Part of the problem is that some countries are represented by junior
>> delegates or NY based staff who are less knowledgeable about the Platform
>> Action and gender issues. Many G77countries are not very active and need to
>> be encouraged to participate more. Other countries are taking more
>> conservative positions and are working to undermine the >progress that women
>> made in Beijing. 
>> What you can do: 
>> *Immediately contact your government at home and/or in New York and let them
>> know that women are expecting a strong document at the end of this process
>> and that women are aware of what their governments are doing or not doing.ハ 
>> *The Progressive Latin American countries need to be supported at home as
>> they are under attack from the Vatican which has generated some press
>> their actions in NY.ハ 
>> *Where appropriate, encourage governments to send experienced people
>> (including NGOs) who are familiar with the PFA and gender issues to
>> the document.ハ More experienced negotiators are desperately need, so that
>> there problems aren t created when well-meaning representatives "put their
>> foot in it" because they don't understand the context.ハ A number of efforts
>> are being made to provide stronger technical assistance and assistance with
>> developing potential language for consensus.ハ However, there remains
>> inadequate support on language regarding the environment, decision-making,
>> institutional machineries, etc.ハ 
>> *Regarding the recommendations, we need more progressive voices in the
>> Contact Group and the two Working Groups, so that the Chairs can identify
>> consensus.ハ Right now, with our ranks a little thin, the conservatives take
>> more airtime than their numbers warrant. The SADC countries have not been
>> visible, other than South Africa, and their voices are missed.ハ Capitals
>> to be giving more progressive and direct instructions, including a forceful
>> statement that the Platform cannot be reopened.ハ 
>> *Finally, it is important that governments and delegations to express their
>> concern about the pace (and tactics of the right) to the Bureau, to the
>> Chairs, to the DAW, and to the higher echelons of the UN (Louise Frechette,
>> Dep. SG, is receptive)!ハ They have to know that governments are watching,
>> feel it is not acceptable to come out of UNGASS without a set of concrete
>> commitments.
>> * Please let us know what you learn when you speak with your governments
>> about the crisis brought on by this review process.  Center for Women's
>> Global Leadership

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