Somalia has made “enormous strides on its path to peace and stability”, and Somali women’s participation in peace and security efforts has “helped advance society towards an inclusive and peaceful future”, UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed said on Wednesday.
She was joined by AU Special Envoy on Women, Peace and Security, Bineta Diop, and the Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General for the Horn of Africa, Parfait Onanga-Anyanga.
The importance of women’s meaningful participation in elections, efforts to counter extremism, and the economic development of Somalia, were underscored by the delegation, who met with Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre and cabinet ministers from the Federal Government of Somalia to hear about government policy in this area, as well as with female civil society leaders.
“The opportunity to hear from a diverse range of voices about the role of Somali women in different spheres of life drove home just how vibrant and engaged they are, and also how committed they are to ensuring that the role of women and gender equality is factored into all facets of life here,” said the Deputy Secretary-General.
However, the deputy UN chief noted that further progress is needed, when it comes to gender equality; the role of women in politics, peacebuilding and security; and women’s full participation in the “one person, one vote” federal elections, due around late 2020 and early 2021.
Ms. Mohammed praised the engagement of Somali women in a range of spheres, and their commitment to ensuring that the role of women and gender equality is factored into all facets of life. “This means challenging some outdated traditional views on the role of women and creating a space for them to be able to fulfil their potential.”
The delegation also met with senior officials from the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), UN Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS) and UN agencies, funds and programs.