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AMNESTY: Beijing + 5: A review of inaction

* News Release Issued by the International Secretariat of Amnesty International *
Amnesty International public document
AI Index ACT 77/011/2000
News Service Nr. 114 10 June 2000

Beijing + 5: A review of inaction

NEW YORK: The overall process of Beijing + 5 has proved to be a disappointment, Amnesty International said as the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Women concluded.

"The way a handful of governments have been allowed to hold hostage the review process illustrates the broader reality for women: when it comes to women's human rights there is a persistent lack of political will."

The negotiation process to draft the outcome document of Beijing + 5 illustrated that certain governments are still unwilling to fulfil their commitments towards women's human rights, or even to admit that they have a responsibility to do so.

"This document was supposed to provide a blueprint for further action to ensure the full implementation of the commitments made in Beijing – instead in too many instances governments were not willing to even re-state what had been said five years ago," Amnesty International said.

"Consequently the document will do little to assist, in practical terms, governments and civil society to move forward in realizing women's human rights."

Nevertheless those governments that have been genuinely committed to the Beijing + 5 process will continue to implement and move forward on these issues.

In addition, women's and human rights groups at all levels will continue to use the Beijing Platform for Action, adopted five years ago, to guide their work, while also making use of the positive aspects from this review process.

ENDS.../

Amnesty International, International Secretariat, 1 Easton Street, WC1X 8DJ, London, United Kingdom

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