Open Day on Women, Peace and Security

Date: Tuesday, November 5, 2019

For the sixth consecutive year, UN Women and the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office, in close cooperation with UN system representatives, including UNDP, UNHCR, UNRGID and DPPA, organized an Open Day on Women, Peace and Security (WPS) in Tbilisi, Georgia.

Monika Morgoshia, youth activist discussing the issues concerning the conflict affected youth
Monika Morgoshia, youth activist discussing the issues concerning the conflict affected youth; Photo: UN Women/Leli Blagonravova

Around 60 representatives of women’s and youth’s civil society and grass-roots organizations, as well as internally displaced and conflict-affected women from the regions of Imereti, Samegrelo and Shida Kartli living in villages adjacent to the Administrative Boundary Lines (ABLs) with Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia, were brought together to discuss the progress and challenges of implementing the WPS agenda in Georgia with the UN representatives.

“Open Day is an important opportunity to primarily listen to the experiences, ideas and priorities of women affected by the conflict,” reflected Sabine Machl, UN Resident Coordinator in Georgia.

Since 2012, Georgia has adopted three National Action Plans (NAP) on the UN Security Council resolutions on WPS. Notwithstanding the positive developments to advance the WPS agenda, the full, equal and meaningful participation of women, specifically at the local level remains a challenge.

UN Women Country Representative in Georgia Ms. Erika Kvapilova and UN Resident Coordinator Ms. Sabine Machl responding to the questions from grass-roots women
UN Women Country Representative in Georgia Ms. Erika Kvapilova and UN Resident Coordinator Ms. Sabine Machl responding to the questions from grass-roots women; Photo: UN Women/Leli Blagonravova

Women from the ABL-adjacent villages raised a number of issues concerning the security situation and the depopulation of the villages, as well as the limited access to basic services, among them health care, transportation, roads and infrastructure. “Due to the security situation, we lost access to the forest, which is our only source of income. People are leaving since there are no opportunities to sustain their families or a normal life in our village,” explained Lela Muladze, a local woman from the village of Chorchana (Khashuri Municipality).

Three representatives of civil society organizations - Julia Kharashvili of the IDP Women’s Association “Consent”, Elene-Maia Rusetskaia of the Women’s Information Center and Ekaterine Gamakharia of the Cultural-Humanitarian Fund “Sukhumi” - presented the findings from the localization process of the NAP and shared concrete examples of how not only local authorities but also the international community and donors can effectively address the needs of conflict-affected women (and communities) and include women’s voices in decision-making.

The findings and recommendations from the Open Day inform further advocacy work and technical support of the UN system to national partners - especially to grass-roots, internally displaced and conflict-affected women - in line with the mandates and commitments of the respective UN agencies, programmes, funds and entities under the United Nations Partnership for Sustainable Development and the nationalized Sustainable Development Goals.