Ladies and Gentlemen,
I’m honoured to address the sixty-fifth session of the Commission on the Status of Women. The key theme of the session provides an opportunity to thoroughly discuss the existing inequalities and discrimination faced by women in political and public life, and the impact of the pandemic on violence against women, including domestic violence.
Protection of women’s rights and addressing the discrimination against women and girls is one of the fundamental priorities of Armenia being also a key pillar of our Human Rights Council 2020-2022 membership.
In this context, a broad range of programs aimed at the promotion of gender equality are currently carried out in Armenia along with the legislative reforms. The Gender Policy Implementation Strategy of Armenia for 2019-2023 sets the government’s priorities for equal participation of women in decision-making processes achieving gender equality in science, education and socio-economic spheres.
Within the framework of the COVID-19 pandemic response and rehabilitation programs, the Government of Armenia has undertaken targeted actions to mitigate the implications of the crisis on the most vulnerable groups with a special focus on the needs of women and girls.
In Armenia, the implementation of gender equality policy is institutionalized at the national, provincial and community levels. As a coordinating mechanism, the Council on Women’s Affairs of the Republic of Armenia is committed to ensuring the equal participation of women and men in political and socio-economic processes. Emphasizing the significance of the SDG 5 and its main targets Armenia has also undertaken reforms to ensure equal access of women to economic resources and creating favourable conditions for the economic empowerment of women.
The recent aggression unleashed by Azerbaijan against the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, with the involvement of foreign terrorist fighters posed an existential threat to the population of Artsakh, making the issue of their protection an urgent priority. Azerbaijan’s indiscriminate and disproportionate military attacks, shelling and bombardments have resulted in civilian casualties and mass displacement and heavily affected the region’s civilian infrastructures, including a maternity hospital and other healthcare institutions.
Safe and unhindered humanitarian access to the civilian population in Nagorno-Karabakh is crucial to address the life-saving needs of women and girls. There is an urgent necessity to implement individual social and rehabilitation programmes targeting all women affected by the conflict, including those who were forced to flee to Armenia.
Another pressing humanitarian issue is the immediate return of the Armenian prisoners of war and civilian hostages, including women captured in war and post-war period by Azerbaijan.
Armenia will continue taking innovative approaches to the promotion of women’s rights and achieving gender equality. As a leader of the “Technology and Innovation for Gender Equality” Action Coalition of the “Generation Equality” Forum, Armenia will utilize modern technologies to promote gender equality.
Armenia is committed to full and inclusive participation of women in public life, protection and promotion of their rights for building back better, transforming the world and shaping a bright future for the generations to come.