Ahead of tomorrow's UN Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security, German civil society calls upon German GovernMent to protect WPS Agenda

Permanent Mission of the Federal Republic of Germany to the United Nations 

Ambassador Dr. Christoph Heusgen 

871 United Nations Plaza 

New York City, USA

                                                                                                                               Berlin, 28 October 2019


Open Letter to the Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations on South Africa’s Women, Peace, and Security draft resolution


Dear Ambassador,

We – as representatives of German civil society and friends – are strongly concerned about the UN Security Council resolution on Women, Peace and Security which has been put forward by South Africa and which is currently being deliberated by the UN Security Council members ahead of tomorrow’s Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security.

The draft resolution poses great risks to seriously damage the Women, Peace and Security Agenda, which actors around the world have been building for the last two decades.

With deliberations ongoing, we are in particular concerned about continuing efforts by UN Security Council members to restrict and water down language on various crucial aspects of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda. We thus urge the German Government, and all like-minded UN Security Council members, to ensure that the planned resolution does not fall short of recognising, without restrictions,

  • Women’s right to full, equal and meaningful participation in all aspects of peace and security, including all formal and informal peace processes;

  • The centrality of gender equality and the human rights of all women and girls to international peace and security;

  • The legitimacy of the work of all civil society, including human rights defenders and women human rights defenders as well as women peacebuilders in their role in promoting peace and security; and the importance of ensuring that they are able to carry out their work in an enabling and safe environment free of attacks;

  • The international community’s commitment to full implementation of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda.

If any of the issues outlined above are being weakened, watered down and/or restricted, we call upon the German Government as a member of the UN Security Council to immediately withdraw its support for the resolution put forward by South Africa, and take all necessary action to protect the normative agenda.

In doing so, we strongly encourage the German Government to cooperate with likeminded states to ensure that the Women, Peace and Security Agenda is being defended and enabled to continuously serve communities around the globe.

Lastly, we would like to recall the Open Letter to Permanent Representatives to the United Nations: Recommendations on the Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security published by the NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security on 22 October 2019, which has been endorsed by over 400 civil society organisations from over 80 countries, working on a range of issues spanning the entire peace and security spectrum. We signed this letter and continue to stand firm behind its messages, which are central to the current deliberations on the proposed Security Council resolution.




Amica e.V.

Canaan Project

CARE Deutschland e.V.

Centre for Feminist Foreign Policy

Deutsche Sektion der Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)

Deutscher Frauenrat

Deutscher Frauenring e.V.

European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights

Frauennetzwerk für Frieden

Gunda-Werner-Institut für Feminismus & Geschlechterdemokratie

International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN)

medica mondiale e.V.

OWEN - Mobile Academy for Gender Democracy and Promotion of Peace e.V.

OXFAM Deutschland e.V.

UN Women Nationales Komitee Deutschland e.V.

Nina Bernarding