- Chairperson  -



02.COM.FEMM/03/D18470/ES/ddl                                                              Secretary General Kofi Annan

                                                                                                        Office of the Secretary General

                                                                                                        United Nations

                                                                                                        New York, NY 10017



                                                                                                        Brussels, 5 May 2003




Dear Secretary-General,


Re: Declaration on Peace


One of the priority issues of the Committee which I have the honour to chair is to combat all forms of violence against women, violation of women´s rights and enhance women´s role in prevention and resolution of conflicts. With the outbreak of the war in Iraq, I took the initiative to a Declaration on Peace, which was signed by members of a Network of Parliamentarians responsible for gender issues in EU Member States, Accession States and European Parliament, who met on 31 March 2003, in Athens. The Declaration is at Annex.


The declaration aims at promoting women´s role in decision-making at all levels where important political decisions are taken, especially concerning prevention and resolution of conflicts.


May I draw your attention to the  requests of the Declaration:


-    that  women shall have the possibility to play an important role in future post-conflict Iraq;


-    that women´s voices are taken into account in the strive for peace, security and democracy, in the Middle East, Iraq and all other areas of armed conflicts;


-    that women and men participate on an equal footing  in peace negotiations and in post-conflict peace and reconciliation efforts;


-    that, as long as equal participation of men and women does not exist, an International Women´s Council, which should work in parallel with the relevant UN bodies, should be created immediately.



I urge you, Mr. Secretary-General, to employ all possible means at your disposal in order to ensure that  the requests of the Declaration are taken into account, especially  when the Road Map for promoting peace and security in Middle East is materialised, and when a new Government in Iraq is created. We all hope that women will be given the opportunity to participate in designing the future of post-conflict Iraq, take part in the political decision-making process as well as in the reconstruction and the future government.


Yours sincerely,






Annex: Declaration on Peace


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