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Kamala Sarup: Innocent Women Have Been The Victims

Innocent Women Have Been The Victims


By Kamala Sarup

International Woman's Day is on the 8th of March. It is a time when everyone on earth has a chance to listen together to the voice of women. Conflict, war and terrorism caused women deaths since hundred years. There have been many isolated acts against women since then, but state reactions to these events were low and ineffectual.

The number of innocent women and children who have been the innocent victims. Societal problems affecting women and making them vulnerable were a result of inequalities. It was clear that women and children living in less developed areas, are the most vulnerable. Women have limited access to occupations and resources, they are the ones hardest hit. A lack of commitment and implementation of policy are obstacles to solving the crisis.

On the other hand, throughout the history, women have actively participated in the active non-violence movement. Throughout the world women have continued to organize and implement peace initiatives. Women have the power and potential to defuse war. Cock, Jacklyn Sociology Professor at Wits University, Johannesburg, said "When we stand for peace as women, it is not to make a case for our special victim hood, but to represent a different vision of strength. We wanted our presence to be visible. We wanted it to be clearly understood that what we were doing was our political choice, a radical criticism of the patriarchal, and a non-violent act of resistance to policies that destroy cities, kill people, and annihilate human relations".

Even in May 1999, the Hague Appeal for Peace approved the Hague Agenda for Peace and Justice for the 21st Century, which stressed the need to include women from all areas of society at all stages in any peace negotiating process. The third UN Conference on Women in Nairobi (1985) reaffirmed the commitment to disarmament issues by highlighting the key role women can play, including in nuclear disarmament, and calling for greater support of women's efforts.

In 1995 at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, governments agreed to Strategic Objective to Reduce excessive military expenditures and control the availability of armaments.

Lungile Magagula, head of justice, peace and reconciliation of the Swaziland Council, further said women were the most likely to be affected by violence and assault in times of conflict. Even though they were excluded during the negotiation of peace agreements, they needed to be "put in a position where they see that justice actually is done. To prevent the violence before it breaks out.

UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women Peace and Security which was passed unanimously on 31 October 2000, recognizes that women are disproportionately victimized in wars and calls upon all parties to armed conflict to take special measures to respect women's rights. And it calls for better representation of women throughout the UN system itself.

Representatives of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, stated that "The origin of women's peace and disarmament movements can be traced to various roots. It is useful to examine the elements of the development of the women's peace and disarmament movements calling to end war and begin complete disarmament, as a unique phenomenon.

During the Cold War, women lobbied against the stockpiling and possible use of nuclear weapons. After a 1959 Conference on "the responsibility of women in the atomic age", the newly-formed European Movement of Women against Nuclear Armament, and other women's groups, embarked on massive educational and petition campaigns. report said.

Women affected by conflicts, without shelter and former women soldiers who need rehabilitation globally.

Nepalese women and Peace

Women comprise at least 50 percent and more than 95 percent of Nepali women are effected by Maoists war. Since 1996, the Maoist war has cost over 14,500 lives and has brought the country's fragile economy into deep trouble. There are no precise estimates, official or non-official, of the number of women widowed or children orphaned. Since conflict started, rape and kidnapping have increased. Prostitution increased. Kidnap and torture still take place.

Forceful recruitment of young women in the Maoist force is another serious issue in Nepal. Many young women have been displaced from their homes and forced to stay away because of this threat to them in their villages. Many displaced women and their families are still without shelter. Nepali conflict has also contributed to a rise in prostitution and trafficking, which threatens women's health.

On the other hand, In Nepal, the issue of peace and women was addressed about a decade ago. Although The International treaty were also adopted but, unfortunately, each and every regional and international initiation cannot be implemented properly because of a lack of women empowerment programs in the nation. A fundamental problem is the lack of a precise and coherent work.

Nepalese women believe, if they are given an opportunity to make their voice heard, if they can bring their own perspective to the table, the chances for lasting peace and reconciliation will improve immeasurably. Nepalese women must have a right to be involved in all peace processes. Nepalese women are to play an equal part in security and maintaining peace.

I think the key to the reform of peace and women participation is the education of the women.

More women should be involved in peacemaking and peacekeeping mission globally.

*************

Nepali Journalist and Story Writer Kamala Sarup is an editor of peacejournalism.com. She is specialising in in-depth reporting and writing on Peace, Anti War, Women, Terrorism, Democracy, and Development. Some of her publications are: Women's Empowerment (Booklet). Prevention of trafficking in women through media,(Book) Efforts to Prevent Trafficking in for Media Activism (Media research). Two Stories collections. Her interests include international conflict resolution, cross-cultural communication, philosophy, feminism, political, socio-economic and literature. Her current plans are to move on to humanitarian work in conflict areas in the near future. She also is experienced in organizational and community development.

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