Welcome to Raisina House!
As is the case with other armed conflicts, women have and continue to bear the consequences of the protracted war between Israel and Palestine. Complicating the matters further is the duality of gender-based violence experienced by Palestinian women by Israeli forces (men and women). Simultaneously, profoundly patriarchal societies like Palestine oppress and deny women’s fundamental rights and dignity while exacerbating psychological and direct violence experienced throughout their existence. The imposition of lockdown measures due to the pandemic has reduced women’s access to relevant healthcare and protection services while worsening their challenges. The convergence of modern-day apartheid and anti-feminist values cumulatively push women to the margins of society further.
Therefore, the struggle to establish a sense of belonging and empower their fellow members stems from the deprecating conditions that women confront frequently. Youth-led activism is a pivotal aspect of Palestinian society. It emanates from natives and expatriates, who spearhead the social movement to address the impact of gender-based violence that is the outcome of a highly politicised and hostile climate that nurtures a dehumanized outlook of the Palestinians over seven decades. Simultaneously, it seeks to challenge the patriarchal narrative that has curtailed women’s holistic development at home.
In this session, we wish:
● To examine the top-down approach in condoning and promoting gender-based violence against women.
● To assess the differential impact of political and patriarchal violence on women across the gender spectrum.
● To analyse the first and second round of impact of political and patriarchal violence on women.
● To discuss the, if any, the differential impact of political violence committed by Israeli men and women
against Palestinian women on the latter’s long-term psychological and physical well-being.
● To focus on how the pandemic is liable for exacerbating the already worsening divide and gender-based
Libyan women’s inclusive role is one of the lynchpins to ensure sustainable peace in the post-war era. Albeit five women ministers in the interim government are a significant feat after over a decade of armed conflict, the future will continue to remain bleak unless continuity is maintained in the post 2021 era. Although the interim Prime Minister, Abdulhamid al-Dabaiba, previously promised to reserve a 30% quota for women ministers in his cabinet, he already appears to be faltering in his assurances. No more than 15% of women comprise interim leadership. Nevertheless, in an already precarious environment, such an achievement is a milestone that will go down in history. Whether it will be for all the right reasons is yet to be determined.
Historical precedents dictate that the absence of or the inadequate presence of women as active agents of peace diminishes the probabilities to establish a sustainable resolution. The Libyan example is no exception. It is pivotal that women peacebuilders, besides a top-down approach, also engage in a bottom up strategy to revolutionise the country for the foreseeable future. While this has to be a Libyan-owned process, the support of international actors is equally crucial.
In the session, we wish:
● To deliberate on the role of women peacebuilders.
● To analyse the role of women peacebuilders in Libya.
● To examine the ongoing efforts/initiatives of grassroots, political, and community leaders and mainstream civil society activists to challenge the gender stereotypes and ensure gender mainstreaming in post-conflict Libya.
● To assess the challenges they will/currently confront to ensure gender parity and an inclusive post-conflict reconstruction process.
● To examine how international and regional actors can support an equitable solution in the country.