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Council of Europe conference plans peacemaking role for women

News and Press Release
Originally published
Strasbourg,16.01.2003 - European Equality Ministers are to meet in Skopje for a Council of Europe conference on the role of women in peacemaking and conflict prevention (22 and 23 January, Alexandar Palace Hotel).

The aim of the conference is to draw up policy guidelines that will bring a gender perspective to conflict resolution, peacekeeping and democracy-building. It will look at women's participation in the decision-making process, their contribution to the rebuilding of post-conflict societies and at the question of how to build an effective framework to promote gender equality.

Ministers will share experiences from their own countries, with a focus on areas such as the Balkans, Caucasus and Northern Ireland where women have played a central role.

Macedonian Prime Minister Branko Crvenkovski and Council of Europe Deputy Secretary General Maud de Boer-Buquicchio will open the conference on Wednesday 22 January at 9.30 am.

Operational information

More information will be available on the Council's website at

Audio clips of specially prepared interviews with key speakers can be downloaded from this site. Professional standard Betacam SP copies of the interviews are also available from the Council of Europe at the number below.

Press contact on the spot:

Cathie Burton, Council of Europe Spokesperson and Press Division
Mobile +33 6 85 11 64 93

Press Contact

Council of Europe Spokesperson and Press Division
Tel. +33 3 88 41 25 60 - Fax. +33 3 88 41 39 11

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5th European Ministerial Conference on equality between women and men - Democratisation, conflict prevention and peacebuilding: the perspectives and the roles of women - Skopje - 22-23 January 2003


Wednesday 22 January 2003

9h30 Opening of the Conference by Ms Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe

- Address by the Prime Minister, Mr Branko Crvenkovski

- Address by Ms Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe

- Election of the Chair and Vice-Chairs of the Conference

- Statements by representatives of the Committee of Ministers and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe

10h15 Press briefing

10h15 Introduction to the Sub-themes of the Conference

Sub-theme 1: "The roles of women in democratisation and peacebuilding"
- Keynote speech by Ms Elisabeth Rehn, UNIFEM Independent Expert

Sub-theme 2: "The roles of women in the prevention of conflicts"
- Projection of a documentary about the role of women in the prevention of conflicts "Voices at the grassroots" accompanied by a short speech by Ms Flora Van Houwelingen, Chair of the CDEG

- Questions

11h00-11h30 Break

11h30-13h00 Working Session I

- Presentations of their speeches by Ministers

- Discussion

13h00 Lunch hosted by the Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe for Ministers and Heads of Delegation

14h45 Working Session II

- Continuation of the discussion on the two sub-themes

16h00 Break

16h30 Working Session III

- Continuation of the discussion

18h00 End of the first day

[18h00-19h30 Meeting of the CDEG]

20h00 Reception given by the host authorities


Thursday 23 January 2003

09h30-10h30 Working Session IV

Continuation of the discussion followed by a presentation of the draft Resolution on the general theme of the Conference by the Chair

10h30-12h00 Presentation of the draft Declaration and Programme of Action "Gender Equality: a core issue in changing societies" by the Chair of the CDEG followed by a discussion

12h00-12h30 Break

12h30 Closing Session

- Adoption of the draft Resolution and the draft Declaration

- Address by the Chair of the Conference

- Closing address by Ms Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe