ASEAN has embarked on exploring how to implement the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda in the region. It has recently organised “an inaugural inter-sectoral dialogue on WPS issues in the ASEAN region” to support Member States implement the Joint Statement on WPS adopted at the 31st ASEAN Summit in Manila, Philippines in November 2017. This was the region’s first explicit affirmation of support for the WPS agenda.
The ASEAN Statement recognises that peace and security are essential to the achievement of sustainable development and are interconnected and vital to the future of ASEAN. It explicitly refers to the importance of women’s participation in the political, security and justice sectors and the full participation of women in peace processes as negotiators, mediators, and first responders, including in the prevention of violent extremism.
Dr. Noeleen Heyzer