UN Women Executive Director visits Bosnia and Herzegovina
Date: Wednesday, November 6, 2019
UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka travelled to Bosnia and Herzegovina from 3-6 November to reaffirm UN Women’s commitment to support the country in its efforts to advance gender equality and the women and girls’ empowerment.
During her first official visit to the country, Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka participated in the official opening of the UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women (UN Trust Fund) Global Grantee Convention at the Bosnia and Herzegovina Parliament, alongside Charlotte Bunch, Founding Director and Senior Scholar at the Center for Women's Global Leadership at Rutgers University, Hakima Abbas, the co-Executive Director of AWID, Željko Komšić Chairman of the Presidency, and Aldijana Šišić, chief of the UN Trust Fund.
Following the opening ceremony, UN Women Executive Director launched the Generation Equality campaign in Bosnia and Herzegovina with a group of young people engaged in gender equality. They discussed women’s and girls’ participation in sectors where they are currently underrepresented, such as science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), as well as the specific challenges of girls from minority groups.
At the “Beiijng Unfettered” workshop led by AWID, an international, feminist, membership organisation committed to achieving gender equality, the Executive Director delivered opening remarks to the current grantees of the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women. The event provided an opportunity to imagine a world free from violence against women and girls, and brainstorm solutions on how to get there, ahead of the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action in 2020.
Also during her visit to the country, Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka met with various advocates for gender equality and leaders, including Ajna Jusić, President of the Forgotten Children of War Association, and Amra Delić, psychiatrist and researcher specialized in the long-term psychological consequences of wartime rape on women, Željko Komšić, Chairman of the Presidency, and Sezin Sinanoglu, UN Resident Coordinator. Additionally, Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka met with Minister of Human Rights and Refugees Semiha Borovac, Minister of Defense Marina Pendeš, and Director of the Gender Center of Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina Ana Vuković.
With civil society representatives, Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka discussed the challenges and opportunities they face in the context of the Beijing+25 commemoration, including the Generation Equality Forum in Mexico and Paris, in May and July, respectively.
The Executive Director also visited a safe house which provides support to survivors of violence and their children with access to healthcare, legal and psychosocial services. The center is run by the Foundation for Local Democracy and supported by UN Women.