On 1 October 2020, the Parliamentary Secretary of the Latvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Zanda Kalniņa-Lukaševica, briefed foreign ambassadors resident in Latvia about Latvia’s National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security drawn up under the leadership of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The participants included the Ambassador of Canada to Latvia, Kevin Rex; a representative from the Ministry of Defence, Guna Gavrilko; the Director of Centrs MARTA, Iluta Lāce; and the Director of the International Organisations and Human Rights Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ilze Rūse.
The Parliamentary Secretary presented the three main tasks of the action plan: 1) Raising public awareness in Latvia on issues related to Women, Peace and Security; 2) training for the defence and home affairs sector, including the establishment of a gender advisor’s position; 3) transfer of Latvia’s experience and knowledge. The tasks will be implemented in close cooperation with non-governmental organisations, civil society and international partners.
Zanda Kalniņa-Lukaševica confirmed that, within development cooperation, Latvia remains fully committed to support its partner countries in Central Asia and Eastern Neighbourhood in their efforts towards gender equality.
The Canadian Ambassador noted the importance of the Women, Peace and Security theme in Canada’s political agenda, as well as highlighting cooperation between Canada and Latvia in the drafting and implementation of the plan.
Ilze Rūse, Director of the Foreign Ministry’s International Organisations and Human Rights Department, underlined that Latvia can be proud of its excellent performance in terms of women’s representation, including in the foreign service – 40% of Latvian ambassadors and 53% of Latvian diplomats are women. Ilze Rūse also noted that Latvia has the largest share of women (56%) in managerial positions in the European Union.
In 2000, the United Nations Security Council adopted resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. This resolution and the subsequent nine resolutions on Women, Peace and Security marked the beginning of a new process in the promotion of international peace and security, with a special focus on the prevention of gender-based violence and the representation and involvement of women in military conflict resolutions and peacekeeping processes.
The National Action Plan of Latvia has been devised to implement the goals of the United Nations Security Council resolution 1325 in Latvia over the next five years. To produce the Action Plan, a working group was set up under the leadership of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and included representatives from the Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Education and Science, the Ministry of Welfare, and the Ministry of Health.
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