Women - Human Security and Sustainable Peace PanelSession 6 [Second Day] Women: Human Security and Sustainable Peace

The question of security is complex. Which areas are involved and how can we strengthen human security? Mr. Robin Marsh, Secretary General of UPF UK, moderated the session.

Professor Akiko Yamanaka, former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan, emphasized how political dynamics have changed dramatically since the end of the Cold War. Now there is a scramble for natural resources, tornadoes, nuclear accidents, financial crisis. The Middle East problem is getting worse. The nature of security has changed since the end of the Cold War. Security is increasingly complex and multifaceted, including environmental and social dimensions and their interlinkage.

Even the USA, the sole super power, cannot function without cooperation with other states. She introduced the concept of preventative diplomacy, using non violent means of resolving international conflicts. She quoted Aristotle's statement that “It is more difficult to organize peace than to win a war.”  (Read More)

Ms. Kerstin Schultz, Researcher from Transnational Foundation for Peace and Future Research in Stockholm, spoke on the increasing number of civilian casualties in conflicts. In World War I, there were 10% civilian casualties, in World War II 45-50%, in some recent conflicts more than 90% of the victims were civilians. It is essential in peacebuilding to restore civil society. Unemployed young men are easy to recruit for warfare. In some countries it is dangerous to socialize outside your own ethnic group. Poverty eradication should be given preference over military spending. Also, women must receive more attention. UN Resolution 1325 highlights the situation of women in armed conflicts. Women in Africa organize themselves across ethnic borders. One was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. (Read Full Speech)

Ms. Carolyn Handschin, President of Women's Federation for World Peace in Europe, said that the emphasis of human security must be inclusive. In a culture of peace, we cannot just focus on the externals; we have to embrace the citizens in our culture of peace. A good concept is: If I have something, someone else also should have it. We often speak of the society and the individuals, but the family is a bridge that can build peace in the world and peace in the individual. It is a system that minimizes the need for an intricate legal systems and enforcement.

Ms. Isabel Hillestad, from the Institute of Family Policy in Oslo, spoke about the family situation in Europe. The birthrate has fallen in Europe, and today those who are over 65 outnumber those who are under 14, a situation that could eventually lead to the bankruptcy of the welfare state. The family is a basic condition for peace. There is a destabilizing of the family in Europe, with an ageing population, a critically low birthrate, and escalating number of abortions. The family is the antidote to individualism. We need a culture that is favorable to the family and motherhood.

Prof. Akiko Yamanaka,

Deputy Foreign Minister of Japan (2005-2006)

She is currently Professional By-Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge University and Visiting Professor at the Science Academy of Chiba University of Commerce. She represented the Japanese Government in 2006, making a policy speech at the inauguration of the UN Human Rights Council.

She is a Member of the Advisory Group on International Peace Cooperation for Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Board Member of the Global Partner Forum 2010. She has had a long-term presence in the National Diet of Japan as Member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, specialising in diplomacy, security issues, peace building and crisis management.  (Read More)

Ms. Kerstin Schultz
She is from the Transnational Foundation for Peace and Future Research (TFF)

Ms. Schultz has been on TFF conflict-mitigation team since they started working in the Balkans and was member of the Board from 1997 to 2006

She serves as instructor at the TFF "Learning Conflict Program". Since 1991 she runs a consulting firm for teaching and seminars concerning personal development and conflict-mitigation at all levels.   (Read Full Speech)

Ms. Isabel  Hillestad,
Institute for Family Policy, Oslo
Employed in Caritas

Ms. Carolyn Handschin-Moser
Carolyn Handschin is a Vice President of WFWP International and President of WFWPI in Europe, Deputy Director of the WFWPI Office for United Nations Relations and it’s Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva since 1997.

Coordinator of the UN Office of UPF in Geneva and contributing to the work of the Human Rights Council (was Commission) since 1994, in the areas of peace-building, leadership and governance, women’s human rights and their empowerment, education for peace and fulfilling the MDG’s.

Until recently in 2011, Secretary of the UN NGO Committee on the Status of Women and remains a member of the Committee, as well as the Working Groups on “Peace”, and “Human Rights Education and Learning” at the United Nations in Geneva.  She contributed to the NGO task forces on “Disarmament” and “Culture of Peace”, the latter of which she chaired.

She is a Founding member of the Fribourg Peace Forum in Switzerland and Co-founder/Vice-President of the Geneva Interfaith and Intercultural Alliance (GIIA) currently coordinating its “Youth Interreligious Council” Model-UN program.


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