Women Peace and Security Training Programme renamed Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Women Peace and Security Initiative The landmark training programme was established by the UAE government, in cooperation with UN Women

Abu Dhabi, 26 September 2020

UAE’s General Women’s Union today announced that the Women Peace and Security Training Programme has been renamed the “Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Women Peace and Security Initiative”, demonstrating the highest level of political support to the programme. Against the backdrop of rising conflict globally, thelandmark training programme builds women’s capacity in the military and peacekeeping sectors and is sponsored by the UAE government and hosted by the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School in Abu Dhabi.

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Women Peace and Security Training Programme renamed Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Women Peace and Security Initiative The landmark training programme was established by the UAE government, in cooperation with UN Women

UAE’s General Women’s Union today announced that the Women Peace and Security Training Programme has been renamed the “Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Women Peace and Security Initiative”, demonstrating the highest level of political support to the programme. Against the backdrop of rising conflict globally, thelandmark training programme builds women’s capacity in the military and peacekeeping sectors and is sponsored by the UAE government and hosted by the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School in Abu Dhabi.

Under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, (GWU), President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, the programme was established in September 2018 by the UAE’s Ministry of Defense and General Women’s Union to build and develop the capabilities of women in the military and peacekeeping sectors in September 2018. UN Women plays a key role in providing support and engagement on standard-setting and capacity support in the area of Women, Peace and Security. The signing of an agreement which memorialized this collaboration was witnessed by Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the United Arab Emirates, during his visit to New York to lead the UAE’s participation at the 73rd United Nations General Assembly.

The Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Women Peace and Security Initiative aims to boost the participation of women in peace and security sectors, increase the number of women qualified to work in the military sector and create support networks for women working in the military around the world. The initiative also advances the strategic objectives of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, that recognized for the first time the inextricable link between gender equality and women’s participation in international peace and security and highlighted the critical role of women’s full and equal participation in conflict resolution, peacebuilding, and peacekeeping.

Speaking on the occasion, Her Excellency Noura Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Women’s Union, said “It is an immense honour for this pioneering training programme to carry Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak’s name. The programme has achieved exceptional success within two years of its establishment and has been praised by UN Women. It is unique in the sense that we have the UAE Armed Forces manage and deliver the training of women from several countries in the region and beyond. This is a testament to the UAE’s commitment to women’s empowerment across all sectors and our committed contribution to advancing the agenda of Women, Peace and Security.”

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Under Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women, added “I have been greatly impressed by the success of the Women, Peace and Security Training Programme that can train our next generation of women leaders across Africa, Asia and the Middle East in the military and peacekeeping sector. UN Women is proud to support this unique effort as a key partner by bringing its expertise on women, peace and security to this programme. Evidence shows that women’s engagement in conflict resolution and peacebuilding results in longer lasting peace. It is essential for the effectiveness of security forces that they build their knowledge and understanding of gender equality and women’s rights.”

The first round of the programme was launched in January 2019 with the participation of 134 Arab women from seven countries. After the success of the first round, the scope of participation was expanded to include countries from Africa and Asia. The second round of the programme was launched with 223 women from 11 African, Asian and Arab countries in January 2020. The participants completed their training programme in April 2020.

Round two of “Women, Peace, and Security Training Programme” training programme kicks off in Abu Dhabi The programme expands to include 180 women from Africa and Asia

Abu Dhabi, January 13th 2020

under the patronage of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, the second round of the “Women, Peace, and Security Training Programme” training programme has launched in Abu Dhabi today in a ceremony that was organised by the UAE Ministry of Defence and UN Women. Participation in this round of the training programme includes women from 11 African, Asian, and Arab countries including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Chad, Gambia, Ghana, Jordan, Mauritania, Pakistan, Senegal, Yemen, along with the UAE.

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Round two of “Women, Peace, and Security Training Programme” training programme kicks off in Abu Dhabi The programme expands to include 180 women from Africa and Asia

under the patronage of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, the second round of the “Women, Peace, and Security Training Programme” training programme has launched in Abu Dhabi today in a ceremony that was organised by the UAE Ministry of Defence and UN Women. Participation in this round of the training programme includes women from 11 African, Asian, and Arab countries including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Chad, Gambia, Ghana, Jordan, Mauritania, Pakistan, Senegal, Yemen, along with the UAE.

The training programme aims at building women’s capacities and supporting their participation in military and peacekeeping operations. Nearly 50% of the participants come from military and police backgrounds, as they served in their countries’ national forces and have been nominated by their respective governments, to participate in this pioneering training programme, which is organized by UN Women, in partnership with the Ministry of Defence in the UAE and General Women’s Union.

The kickoff ceremony was held at Khawla Bint Al Azwar Military School for Women, and organised by the Ministry of Defence and UN Women, with the presence of HE Matar Salem Ali Al Dhaheri, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Defence and Major General Pilot Sheikh Ahmed bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of the National Service and Reserve Authority (NSR), HE Lana Nusseibeh, Permanent Representative of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations and a group of dignitaries, ambassadors, and diplomatic missions operating in the country.

On this occasion, Major General Pilot Sheikh Ahmed bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of the National Service and Reserve Authority (NSR), stated “The UAE is proud to implement the second round of this programme, which contributes to achieving the strategic objectives of Security Council Resolution 1325  by training female officers to participate in maintaining security and peace in areas of conflict or disaster and we are proud of our growing partnership with UN Women, showcasing our firm belief in protection. Empowering women through rehabilitation to participate in peacekeeping in their communities and around the world is the aim of the programme.”

HE Noura Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Women’s Union commented, “With the start of a new decade, we are pleased to take our close partnership with UN Women to a new level, by involving hundreds of women from friendly countries in this pioneering programme.  We aim to train these cadets on security operations and peacekeeping, in line with the vision of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak on the importance of working to empower women in military sectors, not only in the region but around the world. Participants will benefit from the field expertise provided by the programme and serve their communities and countries in a practical and effective way.”

“This year, the United Nations commemorates the 20th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, which emphasizes the need to involve women in peace-building processes,” said Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Director of the UN Women’s Liaison Office for the GCC. Dr Mouza continued, “through initiatives that train women to take on peacekeeping duties, we are taking important steps towards enabling them to play a greater role in shaping the future and ensuring that they have an opportunity to establish security in their communities.”

The “Women, Peace and Security Training programme” promotes women’s participation in United Nations peacekeeping operations, increases the number of women qualified to work in the military sector and establishes networks to support women in the military and peacekeeping sectors. Following the success of the first round of the programme, which launched at the beginning of 2019, 134 Arab women successfully completed the training. Afterwards, the UAE Government and UN Women agreed to expand participation to include countries from Africa and Asia, in an initiative that is unprecedented in the history of the international organization.

UAE joins Women, Peace and Security Chiefs of Defense Network The initiative backed by UN member states seeks to build capacities and increase opportunities for women in peace and security

Abu Dhabi, December 9th, 2019

The UAE affirms its commitment to advancing the role of women in peace and security, building capacities and increasing opportunities for women’s participation in peacekeeping by joining the Women, Peace, and Security Chiefs of Defense Network (WPS CHOD Network), currently chaired by Canada. This network, which was established in 2017 to accelerate the integration of gender perspectives in the military around the world.

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UAE joins Women, Peace and Security Chiefs of Defense Network The initiative backed by UN member states seeks to build capacities and increase opportunities for women in peace and security

The UAE affirms its commitment to advancing the role of women in peace and security, building capacities and increasing opportunities for women’s participation in peacekeeping by joining the Women, Peace, and Security Chiefs of Defense Network (WPS CHOD Network), currently chaired by Canada. This network, which was established in 2017 to accelerate the integration of gender perspectives in the military around the world.

Under the patronage of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, the UAE continues to make strong strides towards women’s empowerment across all sectors, including in peace and security. The significant step of joining the WPS CHOD Network is a cumulation of years of work to empower women around the world.

The WPS CHOD Network comprises the most senior military leaders; it provides platforms for exploring how the participation of women within the armed forces can be increased and advocates the importance of a gender perspective in peace operations and military affairs.

The network also works to achieve greater understanding of how gender roles improve military operations and peacekeeping negotiations by improving situational awareness and enhancing the military’s understanding of local dynamics.

His Excellency Major General Pilot Sheikh Ahmed bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of the National Service and Reserve Authority (NSR), commented “The UAE has a growing reputation as a strong supporter of the WPS agenda, the deployment of women in UN peacekeeping forces and their increased participation at all levels of peace and security frameworks and processes. H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak’s unwavering support of women’s role in peace and security cemented the UAE’s stand regarding the progression of the WPS agenda.”

“Regionally, the UAE has an outstanding track record in women’s participation in the military sector. Joining the Women, Peace, and Security Chiefs of Defense Network enables the UAE to work with other UN member states and peacekeeping superpowers to share expertise and work collectively and collaborate to advance this important agenda globally.” He concluded.

HE Noura Al Suwaidi, Director of the General Women’s Union, commented “UAE joining the WPS CHOD Network comes with unprecedented commitment of the leadership of the UAE and Sheikha Fatima’s support to empower women across all sectors.”

“Emirati women have become models of progress and empowerment among women across the globe and were able to participate in all sectors with utmost competency and dedication. Joining the Network will further advance Emirati women’s participation in the military adding to their ongoing achievements.”

Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Director of the UN Women’s Liaison Office for the GCC said, “The Women, Peace and Security agenda is a top priority for UN Women and the UN at large. By joining the WPS CHOD Network, the UAE is pledging to effect transformational change, which I believe is achievable because of the alignment of all stakeholders on the importance of pushing the WPS agenda forward.”

“Our collaboration with the UAE Government on the implementation of the UN Women-UAE Women, Peace, and Security Training Programme is case in point, and we are looking forward to expanding this collaboration in 2020, as the UAE fulfills its role within the network.” Al Shehhi concludes.

The UN Women-UAE Women, Peace, and Security Training Programme was hosted at the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School in Abu Dhabi with the participation of 134 women from 7 countries; Egypt, Sudan, UAE, Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. The programme contributes to the preparation of female officers for the United Nations peacekeeping operations, increases the number of women qualified to serve as officers in the security sector, and establishes support networks for women interested in careers in military and peacekeeping. This comes after the success of the inaugural UN Women-UAE Women, Peace, and Security Training Programme this year and the announcement of a second round, which will kick off in Abu Dhabi in January 2020

It contributes towards advancing the strategic objectives of Security Council Resolution 1325, focusing on the importance of capacity-building and training, increasing the effectiveness of peacekeeping operations by engaging more women in missions, promoting global peace and stability and advancing the agenda of women, peace and security.

The UAE’s ongoing commitment to advance the Women, Peace and Security agenda dates to the year 2000 when UN Security Council adopted this resolution which committed all member states to advance women’s participation in all aspects of peacekeeping, peace-building and conflict prevention in addition to protecting women against all forms of violence.

Arab women to help increase women’s representation in military and peacekeeping operations

Abu Dhabi, 30 April 2019

134 Arab women cadets from seven countries in the region completed today, in a graduation ceremony, the first three-months stage of the military and peacekeeping training programme, launched by UN Women in partnership with the UAE Ministry of Defence and the General Women’s Union, to build the capacity and increase the participation of women in peace and security.

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Arab women to help increase women’s representation in military and peacekeeping operations

134 Arab women cadets from seven countries in the region completed today, in a graduation ceremony, the first three-months stage of the military and peacekeeping training programme, launched by UN Women in partnership with the UAE Ministry of Defence and the General Women’s Union, to build the capacity and increase the participation of women in peace and security.

The graduation ceremony, which was held on April 30th, 2019 in Abu Dhabi, was attended by Staff Major General Pilot Abdullah Al Hashimy, Assistant Under-Secretary for Support Services, UAE Ministry of Defense, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women and Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Her Excellency Noura Khalifa Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Women’s Union, as well as representatives from the UAE, including the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School. Members of foreign delegations, the United Nations, and diplomatic missions also attended the graduation event.

The programme is the first-of-its-kind, bringing women from several countries to undergo a military and peacekeeping training in one cohort, demonstrating a successful model for replication globally. Held under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikh Fatima bint Mubarak, the experience provides women in the region with the foundational skills in peacekeeping and conflict resolution and creates peer-to-peer networks among female military officers to provide support during future deployments.

Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Director of the UN Women Liaison Office in Abu Dhabi, said “This is a very special moment for all of us, but especially for these brave young women who are graduating today after completing rigorous military training, which pushed them to their limits, but they persevered. Their success is meaningful on so many levels and it is not just a personal triumph; it signals a myriad of opportunities for thousands of women in our region and around the world. It gives them hope that today’s realities can be changed and that they can be part of this change. This historic programme would not have been possible without the unwavering support and commitment by the UAE’s wise leadership and all the stakeholders involved.”

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of UN Women, said: “Our aim with this training was to increase Arab women’s representation in military and peacekeeping operations. The success of more than 100 women from seven countries in the programme underlines both their right to serve in the security sector, and their role in strengthening the operational effectiveness of peacekeeping and military operations. I am pleased with how far we have come over the course of one year, and I really commend today’s graduates for exhibiting such leadership, mental and physical strength, flexibility, teamwork and integrity. I look forward to seeing the results of the skills and networks that they have built together.”

The three-month military training commenced in January in Abu Dhabi at the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School, the first military academy in the UAE and GCC for women, established in 1990. The group of women, comprised of civilians and national security professionals from the UAE, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Arab Republic of Egypt, Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Socotra Island in the Republic of Yemen, Kingdom of Bahrain and Republic of the Sudan, took part in chemical weapons defence management, first aid and medic training, military topography, urban combat, field engineering, internal security and weapons training, among other military training components. The development of soft skills such as leadership and self-management were cultivated, alongside strong physical fitness training with jiu-jitsu and military marching components.

All participants will have to complete the second stage of the programme, which is a two-week peacekeeping training, commencing on May 1st. Peacekeeping training will prepare the women to contribute to international peacekeeping missions, while also supporting growth in their countries’ national security forces. The training programme has a direct impact on increasing the operational effectiveness of peacekeeping operations, providing the cadets with the skills to partake in conflict resolution and humanitarian assistance, in line with UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security.

Dr Mouza Al Shehhi, Executive Director of the United Nations Women’s Liaison Office in Abu Dhabi, briefs Deputy Secretary-General on Her Highness Sheikha Fatima and the General Women’s Union efforts to support training program for Arab women on peacekeeping operations

Abu Dhabi, February 8, 2019

Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Executive Director of the UN Women’s Liaison Office for the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), met today with Her Excellency Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations and former Minister of Environment of Nigeria. Dr. Mouza said that she briefed the Deputy Secretary-General on the great efforts of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, President of the General Women’s Union and Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, the Supreme President of the Family Development Foundation in supporting women everywhere, as well as the support which the UAE lends the United Nations in all areas.

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Dr Mouza Al Shehhi, Executive Director of the United Nations Women’s Liaison Office in Abu Dhabi, briefs Deputy Secretary-General on Her Highness Sheikha Fatima and the General Women’s Union efforts to support training program for Arab women on peacekeeping operations

Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Executive Director of the UN Women’s Liaison Office for the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), met today with Her Excellency Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations and former Minister of Environment of Nigeria. Dr. Mouza said that she briefed the Deputy Secretary-General on the great efforts of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, President of the General Women’s Union and Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, the Supreme President of the Family Development Foundation in supporting women everywhere, as well as the support which the UAE lends the United Nations in all areas.

She also briefed Her Excellency Amina Mohammed on the progress made in the training program to build the capacity of Arab women in the military sector and peacekeeping operations. The program is sponsored by the General Women’s Union and the UN Women Liaison Office for the GCC, in cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Defense. The UN official also met with a number of participants in the training program, who expressed positive views about the program and its importance to both the United Nations Women’s Organization and the UAE, which stands by women everywhere.

She said that the support of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima “Mother of the Nation” to the participants in the program is truly inspiring and this direct support by the UN Deputy Secretary-General shows great appreciation for them.

The Arab women military and peacekeeping training program commenced at the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School in Abu Dhabi last month with the participation of 137 women from 7 countries; Egypt, Sudan, UAE, Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia.

The program will contribute to the preparation of women officers for the United Nations peacekeeping operations, increase the number of women, qualified to serve as officers in the army, and establish support networks for women interested in military action and peacekeeping. It will also contribute to advancing the strategic objectives of Security Council Resolution 1325, focusing on the importance of capacity-building and training, increasing the effectiveness of peacekeeping operations by engaging more women in missions, promoting global peace and stability and advancing the agenda of women, peace and security.

Military and peacekeeping programme for Arab women launched

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates - Tuesday, February 05, 2019

A ceremony to mark the launch of the military and peacekeeping programme for Arab women was held today at the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School in Abu Dhabi. Staff Colonel Afraa Saeed Al Falasi, Commander of the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School; Noura Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Women’s Union; Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Executive Director of the UN Women’s LiaisonOffice for the GCC; senior military officers; and representatives of Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation attended the ceremony.

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Military and peacekeeping programme for Arab women launched

A ceremony to mark the launch of the military and peacekeeping programme for Arab women was held today at the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School in Abu Dhabi. Staff Colonel Afraa Saeed Al Falasi, Commander of the Khawla bint Al Azwar Military School; Noura Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Women’s Union; Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Executive Director of the UN Women’s LiaisonOffice for the GCC; senior military officers; and representatives of Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation attended the ceremony.

Speaking on the occasion, H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, GWU, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, FDF, said the UAE’s collaboration with UN Women to host the Arab women military and peacekeeping capacity-building training programme was a testament to the great confidence in the country’s leadership. The UAE signed a Memorandum of Understanding with UN Women on 28th September, 2018, to develop the capabilities of Arab women in military and peacekeeping operations.

Sheikh Fatima affirmed the UAE’s success in achieving gender balance and stressed the importance of women’s representation in all work avenues. She highlighted the UAE’s support to women’s participation in maintaining peace and security in the Arab region, and around the world. She noted the presence of women in peacekeeping missions was necessary and contributed significantly to the effectiveness of such operations. It also gives women the ability to perform their duty towards their countries and the needy around the world.

Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defence Affairs, emphasised the ministry’s strong interest in training Arab women in the fields of military and peacekeeping operations. He said the UAE was committed to advancing the agenda of women, peace and security, and fast-tracking the adoption of Security Council Resolution 1325 at home and abroad.

Al Bowardi added that the UAE was committed to providing women with the necessary skills to contribute to global peace and security, defending the interests of the state and providing humanitarian assistance during crises. The programme has more than 100 participants from seven Arab countries, including the UAE.

Staff Colonel Afraa Al Falasi said, “Khawla bin Al Azwar Military School is honoured to host the first batch of trainees for this programme, the first of its kind to be held in an Arab country. Participants will be trained in military sciences, including infantry, weapons, combat paramedics, internal security, field engineering, physical fitness, Jiu Jitsu, martial arts, defence, coexistence, field skills and topography.”

The programme will contribute to preparing women officers for the United Nations peacekeeping operations, increase the number of women qualified to serve as officers in the army, and establish support networks for women interested in military action and peacekeeping.

UAE partners with UN Women to build Arab women’s capacities in military, peacekeeping fields

New York, United States of America, 29th September, 2018

In the presence of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the UAE Ministry of Defence and the General Women’s Union – under the patronage of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation – signed a new Memorandum of Understanding with UN Women that will build the capacity of women in the military and peacekeeping in the Arab region.

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UAE partners with UN Women to build Arab women’s capacities in military, peacekeeping fields

In the presence of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the UAE Ministry of Defence and the General Women’s Union – under the patronage of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation – signed a new Memorandum of Understanding with UN Women that will build the capacity of women in the military and peacekeeping in the Arab region.

Among the signatories at the ceremony, which was held at the UAE Mission to the United Nations in New York, were Major General Abdulla Al Hashmi, Assistant Under-Secretary for Support Services at the Ministry of Defence; Noura Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Women’s Union; and Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women. In attendance at the ceremony were Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashemy, Minister of State for International Cooperation, Dr. Sultan bin Ahmad Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State, Ambassador Lana Zaki Nusseibeh, UAE’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York; and Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, Director of the UN Women-UAE Liaison Office for the GCC.

This military and peacekeeping progamme for Arab women will commence in January 2019, providing civilian women with a three-month basic military training followed by a two-week peacekeeping training. It will prepare female military officers for UN peacekeeping operations and increase the pool of female military officers, create peer to peer networks among women interested in joining the military and peacekeeping fields, and drive the strategic objectives of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, with particular attention to the importance of capacity building and training.

Commenting on the signing, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed said, “Today represents a historic moment in the United Arab Emirates’ steadfast partnership with UN Women. The UAE will continue to advocate for the full empowerment of women, particularly under the leadership of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak. We will do this hand-in-hand with our Ministry of Defence, the General Women’s Union, and our partners at UN Women to ensure that women in our region and around the world are given the training they need to serve in the security sector, where their presence and leadership adds to the operational effectiveness of missions and increases peace and stability globally. Further, the UAE is committed to advancing the Women, Peace and Security agenda and promoting the tenets of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 both at home and abroad, and we hope that this training programme is just one of many initiatives to come in support of this agenda.”

Maj. Gen. Al Hashmi added, “The UAE is committed to ensuring that women are equipped with the skills necessary to contribute to peace and security globally, from defending national interests to providing humanitarian assistance in times of crisis. This is why the UAE’s Ministry of Defence will be leading this military and peacekeeping training at the UAE’s Khawla bint Al Azwar Military Academy for Women, where women have undergone military training for the past twenty-seven years.” The Khawla bint Al Azwar Military Academy is the first in the region dedicated exclusively to training women in the military, founded in 1991 at the directive of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founder of the UAE.

Noura Al Suwaidi remarked, “Since 1975, under the patronage of Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, the General Women’s Union has led national efforts in empowering women. We believe that these efforts extend to empowering women in all sectors, including the security sector, where women make real, tangible contributions every day to keeping families and communities safe.”

Ambassador Nusseibeh reinforced this point by underlining the UAE’s commitment to advancing the Women, Peace and Security agenda. “The UAE will continue to advance the role of women in all aspects of peace and security because we believe that when women are represented throughout our society – especially as leaders and decision-makers – that our societies become more tolerant, more prosperous, and more stable. Building the capacity of women to join the security sector in their national capacities and providing them with the training to participate in peacekeeping missions around the world isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do.”

UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka remarked, “We have long known that women peacekeepers add tremendous value to operational effectiveness. Security Council Resolution 2242 calls on Member States to double the participation of women as uniformed personnel in UN Peacekeeping Operations by 2020. Innovative partnerships and initiatives like this one are key to meeting this target.”

Director of the UN Women-UAE Liaison office for the GCC, Dr. Mouza Al Shehhi, added “We are pleased that this collaboration between the UAE and UN Women is the first project of such a global and strategic scale to be spearheaded by the UAE’s Liaison Office. We are looking forward to working closely with the Ministry of Defense, the General Women’s Union, and our UAE government partners to see this program evolve into a long-term strategic partnership to increase the number of women represented in military and peacekeeping fields. Together, we can address this important global issue.”

The UAE and UN Women have a long history of partnership. The UAE has been a supporter and contributor to UN Women since its founding in 2010. The UAE has served on UN-Women’s Executive Board from 2013 to 2018, serving as Vice-President of the Asia-Pacific Group and President of the Bureau during that time. In 2016, a UN Women Liaison Office in Abu Dhabi was inaugurated to assist UN Women’s advocacy and partnership efforts in the region.