For a Foreign Policy Based on Human Rights and Gender Equality

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In January 2019, Germany will take up a non-permanent seat in the Security Council of the United Nations (UN) for a two-year period. Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas had agreed to make the issue of „Women, Peace and Security“ a priority of the policies he will represent during this period and to promote the issue actively in New York. In this regard, he expressly referred to the „close connection“ between “gender equality, the protection of human rights, sustainable development and the preservation of peace and security“.1 Foreign policy such as this would contribute towards an ap- propriate participation of the majority of the population – in other words, women, children and the elderly – in efforts to prevent crises and build peace, while protecting them ef- fectively from violence. Here, Germany can pick up the work started by Sweden. In 2014, Sweden was the first country to announce a „feminist foreign policy“ and represent this in the Security Council. However, in the view of the organisa- tions authoring this paper, the following measures are nec- essary if practical impacts are to be achieved from a human rights-based, gender-equal and therefore peace-building foreign policy such as the one announced by the German Foreign Minister.

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