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The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency supports FAS core Programme

SIDA has committed to support the 2013/2015 core programme of FAS on “Women, Peace and Security” aimed at mobilising the power of women to forge peace and drive prosperity in Africa. This three year programme is based on two strategic pillars:
1) Empower African women to assume a leadership role in building peace;
2) Promote gender parity and mainstreaming in Africa.
FAS programme will put particular emphasis on building the capacity of women and the youth to strengthen their role and involvement in conflict resolution, prevention of conflict and post conflict reconstruction. FAS is particularly grateful to SIDA for this generous support that will help us to assess the effectiveness, relevance, efficiency, sustainability, and impact of our programme.

Upcoming events!
FAS President to co-chair the World Economic Forum on Africa
7-9 May 2014, Abuja, Nigeria

Photo credits: WEF

Mrs. Bineta Diop will be Co-chair for the upcoming World Economic Forum on Africa (WEFA), organized in Abuja, Nigeria, 7-9 May 2014. Under the theme, “Forging Inclusive Growth, Creating Jobs”, the 24th WEFA will bring together regional and global leaders from business, politics and civil society to discuss ways to integrate and reform the African continent, in a manner that is beneficial to all its citizens. The main issues to be addressed during the different discussion panels, workshops and meetings featured in the programme of this year’s WEFA, include: Ways of redesigning growth models and of transforming high growth into inclusive and sustainable growth; Deepening and diversifying investment partnerships; and Accelerating society’s transformation through resilience and innovation..

Read the full article , here >>

African Union establishes a Commission of Inquiry in South Sudan

Mrs. Bineta Diop, FAS Founder and President and Special Envoy for Women, Peace and Security of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, has been appointed Member of the South Sudan Commission of Inquiry, established following a decision of the African Union Peace and Security Council (PSC). The nomination was announced by the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, on the 7th of March 2014, at the African Union headquarters in Addis Ababa.
The five-member Commission of Inquiry, chaired by H.E. former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, has the mandate to “investigate the human rights violations and other abuses committed during the armed conflict in South Sudan, and make recommendations on the best way and means to ensure accountability, reconciliation and healing among all South Sudanese communities.”
Together with the other members of the South Sudan Commission of Inquiry, namely H.E. President Obasanjo, Lady Justice Sophia A.B. Akuffo, Professor Mahmood Mamdani and Professor Pacifique Manirakiza, Mrs Bineta Diop will thus contribute to the efforts for bringing sustainable solutions for peace and reconciliation in the South Sudan.

AU press release, here >>

FAS attending the 58th session of the Commission on the Status of Women

The 58th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) will be held in New York from 10 to 21 March under the priority theme of “Challenges and Achievements in the Implementation of the Millennium Development Goals for Women and Girls.” As an ECOSOC-accredited non-governmental organization, FAS engages with the CSW in order to impact the agreed conclusions as well as raise awareness of FAS’ work. Thus FAS will continue to make its contributions to shape the global agenda in the different post-2015 development processes and the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action. FAS will also engage with the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, on the African Union’s Agenda 2063, and on the Common African Position for the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

Full article, here >>

Opinion Editorial - Celebrating African Women on International Women’s Day
Oley Dibba-Wadda, Executive Director – Femmes Africa Solidarite

International Women’s Day, though initially motivated by European and North American labor movements, has become central to women in Africa, as a global advocacy tool to voice their various concerns and reach a wider audience. This year’s theme, “Equality for women is progress for all”, speaks directly to the core challenge faced by women in peace processes across the continent. While we have made significant progress in accessing the peace negotiating tables, there is a need to revisit the issue and highlight ways in which we are succeeding in getting closer to equality, and thus progress for all. Read the full article >>

Presentation of condolences to Graca Machel and the Mandela Family

On 2nd February 2014, 35 women drawn from across Africa travelled to the home of His Excellency Nelson Mandela, to meet and condole with Mama Graca Machel and the family of Nelson Mandela. This visit, which coincided with the historic unbanning of all political movements in South Africa on 2nd February 1990, also brought more than 20 South African women, representing various institutions and formations, to this occasion. The delegation, led by Madame Bineta Diop, the AU special Envoy on Women, Peace and Security together with Mama Getrude Mongella and Ma Phoebe Asiyo expressed their deepest condolences on the passing of the great African icon; reaffirmed the commitment of the African women to emulate and nurture the legacy of Nelson Mandela in general, and as it relates to the women agenda in particular.

Read the full communique, here >>
List of participants, here >>

FAS President appointed “Special Envoy for Women, Peace and Security of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission”

Mrs. Bineta Diop

Mrs Bineta Diop, FAS Founder and President has been appointed “Special Envoy for Women, Peace and Security of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission”. This appointment has been officially announced by H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, during her opening statement at the 22nd Ordinary Session of the Heads of State and Government in Addis Ababa, on 30 January 2014. “I am pleased to announce the appointment of a Special Envoy for Women, Peace and Security, Mrs Bineta Diop, to ensure that the voices of women and the vulnerable are heard much more clearly in peace building and in conflict resolution", Dr. Dlamini Zuma said. “It is with great honor and humility that I accept this appointment” Mrs Diop said. “I pledge to work closely with and for the women of the continent and I am fully committed to contributing to an integrated, prosperous, and peaceful Africa that ensures that women play their rightful role in ensuring peace and security on the continent” she added. FAS members and team warmly congratulate Mrs Bineta Diop for her appointment, wishing her full success with her new mandate as a Special Envoy.

Statement by the Chairperson of the AUC to the 22nd Ordinary Session of the Heads of State and Government, Here >>

Mme. Diop’s interview with CCTV, Here >>
Article in seneweb.com, Here >>

Please find Ms Diop's interview for the Guardian, here >>

23rd GIMAC(Gender is My Agenda Campaign)

The 23rd GIMAC Pre-summit Consultative Meeting on Gender Mainstreaming in the African Union (AU) was held from 23rd to 24th January 2014, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The 23rd GIMAC focused on “Women in Agriculture and Food Security” and addressed other crucial issues including Climate Change and Justice, Reproductive health, Emerging Conflicts on the Continent, including South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Central African Republic (CAR). A press conference was organized, providing the opportunity for several GIMAC members to sensitize the media on what African Women want from the African Union Head of States Summit and to invite them to amplify women voices to the AU summit, on the continent and internationally.

23rd GIMAC Recommendations, English >> / French >>
South Sudanese Women Statement, English >> / French >>
Conference Report, Here >>

Graduation Ceremony – Masters in Gender and Peacebuilding

The professional-oriented bilingual Master’s programme on Gender and Peacebuilding was initiated by Femme Africa Solidarité and its PanAfrican Centre for Gender, Peace and Development to address the shortage of skills among Africans to meet the need for protection of women’s rights during armed conflicts. To achieve such goal this programme embarked on training highly qualified African specialists in gender, conflict resolution and peacebuilding by enabling them to be aware of the rapport between the issues related to gender, peacebuilding and conflict prevention. This Master’s programme is a result of an innovative partnership between the University of Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar (UCAD), the United Nations, mandated University for Peace (UPEACE) of Costa Rica, and Femmes Africa Solidarité’s PanAfrican Centre for Gender, Peace and Development (FAS/PAC). Read full article

Please read the Press Release, English >> / French >>
View the gallery photos, here >>

Regional Action Plan on the implementation of UNSCR 1325 in the Great Lakes Region. Training on Advocacy and Gender budgeting

Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS), in partnership with the Pan African Centre for Genre, Peace and Development (PAC), and the support of the Governments of Finland and Sweden, organized a four-day-training session on gender budgeting and advocacy, which took place from the 16th to the 19th of December in Gisenyi, Rwanda. This event comes as a follow-up to the Regional Conference on Women, Peace, Security and Development, organized by FAS in Bujumbura, Burundi, in July 2013. The training was attended by 20 members of the Regional Steering Committee, coming from Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda, who are in charge of the implementation of the Regional Action Plan for the United Nations Security Council 1325 in the Great Lakes Region.

Solidarity Mission to Casamance, 10th to 13th December 2013

Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) led a solidarity mission in Casamance, Senegal, from the 10th to the 13th of December to promote dialogue among women leaders and encourage civil society and community based women organizations in their mobilization efforts for peaceful resolution of the conflict.
Casamance is a region that has been devastated by an ongoing conflict since 1982. Opposing the rebel group MFDC (Mouvement des Forces Démocratiques de Casamance) to the Senegalese national army, the violence has had a significant impact on the security of the region. Read full article

Please read the Press Release(fr), here >>
View the gallery photos, here >>
Articles in Agence de presse Sénégalaise (APS), here >>
Articles in Diasporas.fr, here >>
Article in le Soleil, here >>

A Fond Farewell to Nelson Mandela

Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) salutes and celebrates the life of Nelson Rolihlahla "Madiba" Mandela, anti-apartheid freedom fighter and former president of South Africa who passed away on December 5, 2013. His rich legacy will continue to live on through his actions and words in support of democratic and free societies with equal opportunities for all. We extend our deepest sympathy to his wife, Madame Graça Machel and his family.
Madiba will always be remembered as a hero, an icon and a genuine leader who took a firm stance against racism, poverty, corruption, sexism and violence against women. The FAS network will always remember his commitment to gender equality and his actions to include women in peace processes in Africa, as was the case in Burundi when as lead mediator, Mandela ensured that women were part of the peace negotiations process.
Madiba’s words from 1996 offer lessons for our world today: “As long as women are bound by poverty and as long as they are looked down upon, human rights will lack substance. As long as outmoded ways of thinking prevent women from making a meaningful contribution to society, progress will be slow. As long as the nation refuses to acknowledge the equal role of more than half of itself, it is doomed to failure.”
Commenting on his legacy, FAS Executive Director, Oley Dibba-Wadda notes that Madiba “set the stage and set the pace so we can continue from where he stopped. Africa is going places and we as actors on this stage have a collective responsibility to equally make our own humble contribution and navigate Africa so it can become – “a prosperous Africa at peace with itself.”
Farewell to Nelson Mandela and may his soul rest in peace.

FAS awarded the Chirac Foundation Special Prize of the Jury for Conflict Prevention

Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) was awarded the Special Prize of the Jury for Conflict Prevention by the Chirac Foundation, to recognize the organization’s remarkable contributions to the promotion of the role of women in conflict prevention and resolution in Africa. This year’s ceremony for the Chirac Foundation Conflict Prevention Prize, which was created by former French President Jacques Chirac took place at the Quai Branly Museum in Paris, on Thursday, 21November. The event was attended by Mr. Chirac, President François Hollande and first lady,Valérie Trierweiler, as well as numerous French political figures, diplomats, representatives of international organizations and civil society. Read more

For more information, please see the official website of the Chirac Foundation, here >>
A short film on the conference, here >>
FAS President’s speech, here >>
An article in French newspaper Le JDD, here >>
More pictures here, here >>

FAS Executive Director receives the Africa Woman Leadership Award

On the margins of the Africa-India Partnership Summit organized on the 27th of November 2013 in Mauritius, Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) Executive Director, Mrs. Oley Dibba-Wadda received the “Africa Woman Leadership Award”, a distinction conferred to outstanding women professionals who have the vision, acumen and professionalism, and demonstrate excellent leadership and management skills in an organization.

The Africa-India Partnership Summit was organized by the World Federation of Marketing Professionals, Stars of the Industry Group, and the World Federation of CSR Professionals, and approached economic issues such as Africa’s need in human capital. The event was followed by the ceremony of the “Africa Leadership Awards”, which recognizes the contributions of individuals who have made a difference in the society, and have proven the qualities of a responsible citizen.
In recognition of her award, Mrs. Oley Dibba-Wadda praised “the engine” of the African continent: ‘Africa’s greatest resource is its ‘human resource’. I strongly believe that as human beings, our aim should be to cultivate and nurture this resource. Our energy should focus on building ‘dream teams’. To do this we must first and foremost be human; have the ability to communicate effectively, recognize potential, acknowledge and praise, use positive motivation. These are qualities I try to embrace as part of my journey and it has helped me build “dream teams” in my professional career”.

High Level Dialogue on the Initiative to Empower Women in Agriculture (EWA) at the sidelines of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation Governance Weekend

Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) – as Gender Is My Agenda Campaign (GIMAC) Network Coordinator – will hold a High Level Dialogue on “the Initiative to Empower Women in Agriculture (EWA)”, in partnership with the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), Africa 2.0 and African Media Initiative (AMI). The initiative aims at empowering the African young women to become the engine of growth in the agriculture sector in order to contribute to economic growth. As part of the Mo Ibrahim Governance weekend (Nov. 7th -11th, 2013), the High Level Dialogue will be held on November 8th, 2013 from h. 8:00 am to 9:30 am at the Plenary Hall of the African Union.
In addition to the GIMAC Steering Committee meeting scheduled at African Union Commission on Thursday, Nov. 7th from h. 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, FAS along with GIMAC Network will lead in the coordination and facilitation of the Africa 2.0 working group on November 7th from h. 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm on the following theme: “Market Enhancement and Segmentation of our target market” – Session n. 4 on Women. Furthermore, AMI will organize the 6th edition of the African Media Leaders Forum (AMLF), the only continent’s annual gathering of media owners and managers. AMLF 2013 will take place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) Conference Hall on November 7th – 8th. The theme for this year’s Forum is: “Media and African Renaissance”.Read more

FAS celebrated the 50 Years Anniversary of the African Union in Geneva

Ms. N. Dlamini-Zuma, Chairperson of African Union Commission - photo by AU

The 50th Anniversary of the African Union (AU) was celebrated at the United Nations (UN) in Geneva on the 14th and 16th of October 2013, under the coordination of the Permanent Delegation of the AU. The event provided the opportunity to look back at the main achievements of the organization, to take into consideration the upcoming challenges, and to restate the faith in Pan African unity and the vision of the AU Commission Chairperson of “a prosperous continent at peace with itself.
Along with H.E. Mr. Olusengu Obasanjo, former President of Nigeria, and H.E. Miss Navanethem Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, FAS President, Ms. Bineta Diop, was speaker on a panel focused on good governance, peace and security in Africa and under the auspices of H.E. Ms. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Chairperson of the AU Commission.
In its closing statements, FAS President urged those present to focus their efforts in achieving, in 10 years’ time, an African continent free from sexual violence against women and child soldiers, where land is equitably distributed to rural populations and particularly, women.
Both days of celebrations ended on a cultural note, with the inauguration of an African Art Craft Exhibition, samples of African music and dance, and a gastronomic voyage into Africa, featuring traditional dishes from various African countries.Read more

FAS President’s intervention can be watched, here

FAS advocates for women’s protection and participation in the Central African Republic peace process at the 24th Session of the Human Rights Council

During the 24th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC), Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) continued its advocacy on the Central African Republic (CAR) for women's protection from violence and their participation in the peace process. FAS welcomes the interim report on CAR submitted by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR), which highlights the gravity of the human rights situation and recommends that the transitional government “adopt legal reforms to combat sexual and gender-based violence [...] and expand the scope of protection of and support for victims of sexual and gender-based violence.” FAS engaged in advocacy during the 23rd session of the HRC towards the adoption of a resolution (A/HRC/23/L.3) to request this interim report.Read more here...

Resolution A/HRC/24/L.39 on CAR, French >> / English >>
FAS oral statement delivered at the interactive dialogue on CAR (French), Here >>
Video (chapter 38), Here >>

Appointment of Ms. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka as UN Women Executive Director, August 19th 2013

Ms. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) and its Pan African Centre for Gender, Peace and Development (FAS-PAC) as well as the members of the Gender is My Agenda Campaign (GIMAC) welcome the United Nations (UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon’s appointment of Ms. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka as the new Director General of UN WOMEN.
Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka a South African national succeeds Ms. Bachelet as the second Executive Director of UN Women; the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women established in July 2010.

The appointment of Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka, former Deputy President of South Africa, was announced by the UN Secretary General on 10 July 2013.
Mr. Ban declared that Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka brings to her new position a wealth of experience in advocating for women’s issues “with a combination of strategic leadership, consensus building and hands-on management experience.” Read more >> .

FAS welcomes new Executive Director!

Ms Oley Dibba-Wadda

The Executive and Advisory Board and members of Femmes Africa Solidarité are pleased and honored to welcome Ms Oley Dibba-Wadda as the new Executive Director of Femmes Africa Solidarité. Ms Dibba-Wadda has already assumed office and is based at the FAS regional Office in Dakar. Oley combines expertise on gender equality in international policy and programming and leadership and management within the international development sector across multicultural and multidisciplinary environments.

The position is key for the development of FAS and we wish Oley a great success in her new assignment.
Says Ms. Dibba-Wadda on her position as Executive Director of FAS; “I am honored to assume this noble role at FAS; at an opportune time when there is a realization and acknowledgment of the meaningful contribution of women and the youth in peace negotiations, reconciliations and consultation processes for Africa’s progression. I have no doubt that come 2063, History will speak for itself”.

FAS President participated to the Rockefeller Foundation Google Hangout

The Rockefeller Foundation hosted a Google Hangout on Wednesday, 14 August 2013, as a follow-up to the Foundation’s recent summit in Abuja, Nigeria on “Realizing the Potential of African Agriculture.” During the Hangout, FAS President, Bineta Diop discussed and debated some of the key issues and themes facing the agriculture sector in Africa with fellow panelists Anne Mbaabu, Director, Market Access Program of the Alliance for a Green Revolution and Kola Masha, Managing Director of Doreo Partners. The Hangout was moderated by Mamadou Biteye, Managing Director of Rockefeller Africa Regional Office. Participants included leaders from finance and agriculture in both the non-profit and private sectors.
Bineta Diop highlighted four key areas for women in agriculture who form 70% of agriculture workers in Africa: access to land, access to credit, the need for capacity building, and the role of civil society organizations in monitoring the implementation of commitments made by Governments to strengthen the agriculture sector. She urged Governments to allocate 70% of their agriculture budgets to support women in agriculture.
Watch the conversation, here >>

Restitution and Capitalization Workshop of Women’s Platform on peaceful elections Terrou-bi Hotel, Dakar Senegal 18-19 July 2013

On 18th and 19th July 2013 a restitution workshop was held at the "Terrou-Bi" hotel in order to capitalize the experience of the Women’s Platform for Peaceful Elections in Senegal. The workshop was chaired by a representative of the Ministry of Women, Children and Women's Entrepreneurship, and attended by special guests, such as, representatives from the Senegalese Economic, Social and Environmental Council, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Office of United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the Autonomous National Electoral Commission (CENA), women's organizations from the Republic of Guinea and the Republic of Mali, as well as other representatives from civil society.
This workshop represented an opportunity to review all the platform’s activities and it was followed by discussions held with delegations from Guinea and Mali. The participants shared lessons learnt and good practices identified in the electoral process that could be disseminated and replicated in Africa.
For more information, Clic Here:

The first regional conference on women, peace, security and development in the Great Lakes region
was held from 9 to 11 July 2013 in Bujumbura.

Aiming to develop a road map for women's engagement in efforts to bring peace to Africa's long-trouble Great Lakes countries, Mrs. Mary Robinson the United Nations Special envoy for the region, with the support of Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) and the International Conference on the Great lakes Region (ICGLR) has gathered more than 100 women for a three-day meeting from 9 to 11 July in the Burundian capital of Bujumbura. “We are showing that women's leadership matters and must be at the heart of the Framework of Hope,” Mary Robinson said in her opening remarks. It’s a “moment of great hope and expectation” she added. The Conference was a full success as the three days discussion closed by the adoption of the “Bujumbura Declaration” which aims to strengthen partnerships for increased collaboration to support the full and successful implementation of the Framework of Hope, and to strengthen solidarity between women’s civil society groups in the Great Lakes region and governments, regional and international institutions.

For more information, please see FAS Communiqué >>
The Bujumbura Declaration: English >> / French >>
The Framework of hope, English >>
The PSC Framework for DRC and the region English and French, Here >>
The Presidential Statement of the UNSC on the GL: English >> / French >>
A Press release , English >> / French >>
Some pictures of the Regional Conference in Bujumbura, please see here >>
Editorial de Mary Robinson dans Jeune Afrique, please see here >>
Op Ed of Mary Robinson in the Guardian, please see here >>

Workshop on Gender and Peacebuilding

The PanAfrican Centre of FAS in charge of the Master II Degree in Gender and Peacebuilding, organized with professors from Cheikh Anta Diop University a workshop on "Gender and Peacebuilding." This workshop took place in Saly from 7 to 10 July 2013

Agenda Atelier, here >>
Aide Memoire atelier, Here >>

for more information, clic here:

FAS holds an expert discussion on the post-2015 agenda.

On July 2, Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) hosted an expert meeting for the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN)’s Thematic Group on Gender, Inequalities, and Human Rights (TG3) to address gender and human rights issues in the post-2015 development framework, finalize the report to be submitted to SDSN’s Leadership Council in September and highlight good practices and practical solutions the report should promote. Participants included Bineta Diop (Founder and President of Femmes Africa Solidarité, co-Chair of the TG3); Joshua Castellino (Dean, School of Law at Middlesex University and co-Chair of the TG3), H.E. Amina J. Mohammed, (Secretary-General's Special Adviser on Post-2015 Development Planning), Magdalena Sépulveda Carmona (United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights), Sophie Bussman-Kemdjo (Senior Regional Manager for Africa, World Economic Forum).

Experts were grateful for the participation of H.E. Mrs Amina J. Mohammed, the Secretary-General's Special Adviser on Post-2015 Development Planning, who addressed some of these issues. She declared: “The reduction of poverty should not be the main goal for the post-2015 agenda. We need to consider the economic, social and environmental aspects too”. She also mentioned: “the challenge is to speak to universality and not leave anyone behind. We need to look at things globally as well as locally”. H.E. Amina Mohammed warned that the post-2015 agenda should not be too ambitious otherwise it might run the risk of being dropped and she committed to work towards State members consensus: “I will make sure that governments leave the door open to dialogue as it is ultimately up to them to enforce compelling goals”. She finally emphasized that accountability will be key to the implementation of the future goals.
Ultimately, FAS presented one of their landmark initiatives to monitor elections: the Situation Room implemented during the Presidential elections in Senegal allowed mobilized Senegalese women, the youth and other actors including the media to encourage citizen to vote and to monitor violence outbreaks, lack of transparence and other incidents. This initiative will be documented as one of the practical solutions which should be replicated in different contexts.
Read more, here >>

FAS Participation to the 23rd HRC

In June 2013, Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) invited Ms Brigitte Balipou, member of the Constitutional Court of the Central African Republic and member of FAS Executive Board to take part in the 23rd session of the Human Rights Council (HRC). Ms Balipou’s presence in Geneva reinforced FAS efforts to promote the leadership of women and facilitate their participation in peace building and conflict resolution in Africa. For two weeks, Ms Balipou liaised with government representatives and international organizations in Geneva to inform them of the critical situation in the Central African Republic. She strongly advocated the need to implement UN Security Council Resolution 1325 so that Central African women can actively participate in conflict resolution and the restoration of peace and security. Ms Balipou’s influenced the resolution, “Action on Technical assistance to the Central African Republic in the field of human rights”, which was initiated by the African Group. This resolution was eventually adopted by consensus on the final day of the 23rd session of the HRC. Ms Balipou also had the honor of participating in a high level panel on democracy, rule of law and human rights. She addressed the HRC on behalf of FAS during the full-day annual discussion on women’s rights and participated in a debate on forgotten conflicts, co-organized by FAS, the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), and the World Young Women Christian Association (YWCA). Moreover, FAS Founder and President participate to a high level panel on Vienna +20 entitled “Women’s rights are human rights”. Ms Diop stressed that despite effective progress, implementation of women’s rights remains a challenge especially in Africa where women are still facing barriers to leadership positions, gender-based violence and a wide range of other forms of discrimination. She explained that this create a situation where they have to rely on men all the time and makes them very vulnerable.
Read more, here >>
Resolution , English >> / French >>
Ms Balipou’s intervention during the high level panel on democracy, rule of law and human rights, here >>
Ms Balipou’s intervention (from 1:12 min) during the full-day annual discussion on women’s rights, here >>
Video of the adoption of Resolution A/HRC/23/L.3, here >>
Photos of the debate on forgotten conflicts, here >>

World Economic Forum: Greater Mobility in Africa Will Aid Development

Source photo: World Economic Forum

The panel emphasized the importance of investing in people, highlighted as a key resource for Africa. Bineta Diop, Chair of the Executive Board, Femmes Africa Solidarité, Switzerland, said that investment in people is not just about investing in the youth, but also in women, who make up more than half of Africa’s population. Although 80% of Africa’s farmers are women, they still lack title to land in most of the continent, she said. “We need to put women as well as youth at the centre of transformation in Africa.”

High numbers of young people are a challenge for future policy-makers, but also a major opportunity as they provide innovation and creativity that can drive the creation of successful businesses across the continent. Read more >>

FAS organizes its 3rd Advisory Board and Partners Meeting in Geneva

Ms Bineta Diop, Chair of the Executive Board and Hon. Elisabeth Rehn, Chair of the Advisory Board

As part of its Governance and Fundraising strategy, FAS has recently convened its third Partners Meeting in Geneva on 3 May 2013, at the margins of the FAS’ Advisory Board meeting held on the 2nd of May 2013.
Nearly 30 representatives from government officials, intergovernmental organisations and the United Nations shared updates on FAS’ work and exchanged on FAS' action plan for the years to come. At this year's meeting, FAS initiated round table discussions on women, peace and security in the Great Lakes, in the Mano River and in the Sahel regions and within the African Union. The discussions identified opportunities and recommendations in order to enhance efforts to empower women’s leadership as a driving force of political stability, peace and recovery in Africa.
On the other hand, the Advisory Board gave concrete directions to enrich FAS’ action plan and the outcomes of the discussions were shared at the partners meeting the following day.

The round table discussion on the Mano River region

FAS' traditional partners reiterated their support and encouraged new organizations to engage with FAS. The support and recommendations from all participating partners were highly valuable and will guide FAS in the implementation of its recently adopted action plan aligned on its strategic framework 2013-2017.

EU Conference: Women of the Sahel in consultation on women's leadership in their region

A High-Level Conference on Women's Leadership in the Sahel Region was held today in Brussels. The event brought together 40 women, civil society leaders of several generations, peace and security experts, peace activists, government officials and gender equality advocates from the Sahel region.

Members of the European Parliament, African and European Ambassadors, senior officials from the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the European Union and the United Nations participated in the event. They heard directly from the crisis-affected women from the Sahel region their views and recommendations on women's economic empowerment and political participation, and their role in peace and recovery.
Following the conference, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice President of the Commission, Catherine Ashton, said:
"All over the world where women prosper, societies prosper; where women suffer, so do the societies they live in. This is also true for the Sahel and this is why we met today to listen to women leaders from this region, where both African and international efforts are crucial to bring a solution to the crisis" .Read more >>

Read the french version: here >>

You will find pictures from the event on the following link: here >>

PRESS RELEASE: Appointment of Mary ROBINSON as Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region of Africa, March 19, 2013

H.E Mary Robinson

Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) and the members of the Gender is My Agenda Campaign (GIMAC) welcome the United Nations (UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon’s appointment of Mary Robinson as the new Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region of Africa.
Her Excellency Mary Robinson is a longtime partner of FAS, and actively supports our initiatives. In March 2010, she co-chaired the High-Level Consultation of Civil Society Advisory Group on the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 with Ms Bineta Diop, Founder and President of FAS.

She is also a member of the GIMAC network, which includes more than 50 civil society organizations. As the Current President of the Mary Robinson Foundation - Climate Justice, which advocates for victims of climate change, Ms Robinson enabled GIMAC to incorporate the concepts of climate change and climate justice at the heart of its priorities.
Ms Robinson also supports the Initiative to Empower Women in Agriculture (EWA) which was initiated by GIMAC in 2012, convinced that "food and nutrition are at the heart of development".Read more >>

Read the french version: here >>

FAS Participation in the 22nd Human Rights Council

For the 22nd session of the Human Rights Council, Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) invited on 11th and 12th March 2013 in Geneva Mrs Haidara, a Member of Parliament (MP) from Mali to take part in the advocacy for the participation of Malian women in the peace process.
Her presence reflects FAS’ objectives of promoting African women’s leadership and facilitating their participation in conflict prevention and resolution, as well as peace-building on the African continent.

Mrs. Haidara with the Mali delegation

Mrs Haidara, MP of the Gao region in northern Mali, was able to meet with the Mali delegation and its Minister of Justice, the Ambassador of the International Organization of La Francophonie, the Ambassador of the European Union, the Deputy Permanent Representative of France, Human Rights advisers to the various diplomatic missions and several Human Rights defenders.
She particularly insisted that the draft resolution « Assistance to Mali in the area of Human Rights » initiated by the African Group explicitly mentions the participation of Malian women in the peace process.
In her address to the Human Rights Council, Mrs. Haidara condemned the severe acts of violence against civilians, especially women and children, and highlighted that the interethnic tensions in the Sahel region constituted a serious threat to the national, regional and international peace and security.

Discussing with Mr. Pellet, Deputy Permanent Representative of France

With Mrs Zappia, Ambassador of the European Union

The Member of Parliament deplored the fact that, since the beginning of the crisis, Malian women have been left out of the discussions for peace mediation and she called for the implementation of the United Nations Resolution 1325 in order for Malian women to be fully integrated in the inter-community dialogue to resolve the crisis and establish long lasting peace.

Press release in French, here >>
Oral statement on Mali in French, here >>
Draft_ resolution - Assistance to the Republic of Mali - French, here >>

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