State Minister Ambassador Redwan Hussein said the Government of Ethiopia has made commendable efforts for the last three years in ensuring that women are included in top leadership positions in the government structure in addition to deploying a significant number of women to peacekeeping missions.
Ambassador Redwan also said the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed women to economic pressures, domestic violence, and early-marriage while it decreased their enrollment rates in schools threatening to backpedal hard-won gains so far.
The state minister said this while delivering remarks at the African Union (AU) Peace and Security Council (PSC) meeting that was convened today (March 22) for its 987th session at a ministerial level.
The agenda of this virtual open session was, ‘women, peace, culture and gender inclusivity in Africa’ which aimed to provide an open platform for discussing how to build a “gender-inclusive culture of peace in Africa”.
Given the multifaceted benefits of educating women to improve the social fabric of society, Ambassador Redwan highlighted the need to create access to education for girls in rural areas besides following an inclusive approach regarding women’s participation in politics.
The session created an opportunity to discuss further mechanisms through which increased representation of women in peace support operations as well as in the prevention, mediation, and peace-making initiatives could be realized.
This is the first time that the PSC convenes a ministerial-level meeting since it decided to have the women, peace, and security (WPS) theme as a standing agenda item in 2010.