Women and Iraq

XVIII Congress, São Paulo, Brazil, 24-25 October 2003

Emergency Resolution

Socialist International Women:

  • recalls the resolution on Iraq adopted by the Council of the Socialist International held in Rome in January of this year, which called for the logic of United Nations political legitimacy to replace the logic of war;
  • refusesand condemns the theory of preventive war and asserts that no state has the right to decide unilaterally on any military intervention which is not within the UN framework and not in accordance with international law;
  • states – in its main Congress resolution on Women and Human Security – that the transition from conflict to peace is a difficult process which does not follow a linear route, and that in the aftermath of conflict women are often not given equal opportunities to work or to take part in the rebuilding of their community;
  • welcomes UN Security Council Resolution 1511, which brought the UN back into play;
  • urges the Iraqi Governing Council to respect the date of 15 December 2003, set in Resolution 1511, for the presentation of a timetable and programme for the drafting of a new constitution for Iraq and for the holding of democratic elections under that constitution. A constitution to be drawn up which guarantees equality between women and men. Positive action should be taken to achieve this, for example the establishment of a quota of at least one third for women's participation in all spheres, including judicial, constitutional and governmental;
  • welcomes the International Donors Conference in Madrid and demands that adequate funding be earmarked for programmes specifically addressed to women;
  • laments the fact that the Iraqi Governing Council includes only 3 women and deeply regrets the murder of Iraqi Governing Council Member Aqila al Hashimi;
  • supports efforts to bring to justice the perpetrators of genocide and other crimes against the Kurdish and Iraqi people, and urges the Iraqi Governing Council to ensure the security and freedom of the Kurdish people;
  • stresses that, although security concerns in Iraq affect the whole population, there is a particular concern that women are not able to work and carry out their normal activities because they in particular are being targeted;
  • underlines the need for a specific security plan to ensure the protection and freedom of Iraqi women;
  • believes that, in order to ensure the economic future of women and their families, programmes directed at women, including credit programmes, must be supported and that all organisations involved in economic planning, including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund and non-governmental organisations, must institute programmes specifically directed at women and include women in all phases of economic planning;
  • Finally, given the traumas of rape, abduction and violence inflicted on the female population, special programmes of counselling and support, whether offered through non-governmental or state health programmes, must receive funding to allow them to adequately address these needs.



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The First Hundred Years

A Short History of Socialist International Women

By Irmtraut Karlsson

This book tells the history of the first one hundred years of the Socialist International Women