A virtual youth panel titled “WOMEN | PEACE | POWER: A Youth Perspective” was held Tuesday to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women Peace and Security.
Jointly organised by UN Women Bangladesh, Centre for Peace and Justice (CPJ), Brac University and Naripokkho, the panel discussion highlighted the perspective of youth on promoting peaceful, cohesive and inclusive societies.
In 2000, Bangladesh played a pioneering role in adopting the landmark Resolution 1325 (2000).
This recognised the disproportionate and unique impact of armed conflict on women and girls, acknowledged the contributions women and girls make to conflict prevention, peacekeeping, conflict resolution and peacebuilding and highlighted the importance of their equal and full participation, as active agents in peace and security.
In addition to the contribution to UN Peacekeeping, Bangladesh has also successfully launched its National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security (NAP WPS) last year, under the leadership of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) with the support of UN Women.
The panel discussion started with a video on the Digital Security of Women.
The young panelists expressed their opinions on peace, security, and their role in advancing this agenda in their respective communities. The interactive discussion also included their take on power and how they can prevent conflict to promote a peaceful and inclusive society.
Explaining the concept of gender equality, Rohingya Refugee youth speaker Lucky said, “As women, we have to raise our voices, share our problems and seek support.”
Addressing the youth panelists, Mia Seppo, UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh, said, “Against this backdrop, coupled with increasing numbers of reports of gang rapes here in Bangladesh, we’re facing increased challenges to human security and lasting peace. This is why you, as young peacebuilders, are so important. You’re at the forefront of building a peaceful, resilient and inclusive society.”
Moderated by Mahmuda Sultana Shorna, Project Assistant at CPJ, the panel included diverse speakers from all across Bangladesh including Maskatul Zinan, Joint Secretary, Women Peace Café, Jatiya Kabi Kazi Nazrul Islam University; Khadija Akter, Executive Committee Member, Women with Disability Development Foundation (WDDF); Lucky, Rohingya Youth Leader; Smaranika Chakma, Society for Integrated Women's Progress, and member of Bangladesh Indigenous Women Network (BIWN); Rima Sultana Rimu, Host Community Youth Activist from Cox’s Bazaar; and Kazi Musfira Mukarrima Kabir, Member, Women Peace Café, Begum Rokeya University, Rangpur.
Dr Samia Huq, Research Fellow, Centre for Peace and Justice, Brac University, and Shireen P Huq, Member, Naripokkho were present as special guests.
The virtual event concluded with the closing remarks from Shoko Ishikawa, Country Representative of UN Women Bangladesh.