On 25 Nov., MEP Viola Von Cramon-Taubadel, EP Rapporteur for Kosovo, wrote a letter EU Special Representative for the Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue Miroslav Lajčák to ask why he had not met with women’s rights organisations in Kosovo on his recent visit with civil society in Kosovo pertaining to the Dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia.
In accordance with United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 on Women, Peace and Security, actors engaged in supporting and mediating peace processes should ensure women’s engagement in these processes, including women’s rights organisations.
MEP Von Cramon-Taubadel’s letter followed her meeting with the Kosovo Women’s Network (KWN), Kosovar Gender Studies Centre and Mitrovica Women’s Association for Human Rights last week, supported by the Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation. During the meeting, activists from these organisations expressed their concerns regarding women’s underrepresentation in peace processes, as per the UNSCR 1325 on Women Peace and Security. More specifically, they observed that the EU Special Representative for the Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue Miroslav Lajčák had not met with leading women’s rights activists or organisations during his consultations with civil society organisations in Pristina a few weeks prior.
Following this conversation, the MEP Von Cramon-Taubadel addressed Mr. Lajčák with the following letter:
“Dear Mr. Lajčák,
I would like to call your attention to an important aspect of the Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue.
Although United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security
calls for the inclusion of women in all peace processes, and the EU has committed to
implementing this Resolution in its EU Strategic Approach to Women, Peace and Security
(https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/37412/st15086-en18.pdf), women have not been
sufficiently included in the Kosovo-Serbia Dialogue.
While this resolution and its sister resolutions point to the important role of women’s rights
organisations in peace processes, I have been informed that you have not met with these
organisations or women’s rights activists in your most recent visit to Kosovo. I would like to
underline the need for a gender-sensitive EU foreign policy, which should be applied in any
dialogue and on any issue. Could you therefore please clarify why you have not included
women’s rights organisations in the meeting that you held with civil society?
Furthermore, what will you do to fulfil the EU’s commitments to including more women in
peace processes, including in both track one and track two diplomacy, related to the
Kosovo-Serbia Dialogue in the future? It has been brought to my attention that the
negotiating team of Pristina does not include any women. Have you raised this issue with?
the leaders of the negotiating team or at any other forum? “
KWN highly appreciates MEP Von Cramon-Taubadel’s support and commitment to advancing gender equality and the women, peace and security agenda in Kosovo. KWN has also sent a letter on this issue to Mr. Lajčák previously, available here:
The aforementioned meeting between women’s rights organisations and MEP Von Cramon-Taubadel took place as part of the annual EU Advocacy Week, supported by the Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation. Through this initiative, every year, women’s rights organizations from the region have the opportunity to meet and share their concerns related to gender equality in the Western Balkans with relevant persons at the European Parliament, EU Commission, and European External Action Service, among others.