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[16days_discussion] [Dignity Television] Iceland Announces a Men-Only UN Conference on Women & Gender Equality

Colbert Gwain colbertgwain at
Fri Oct 3 05:45:55 EDT 2014

On Friday, October 3, 2014 2:32 AM, Blogger <no-reply at> wrote:

Associated Press - By CARA ANNA - October 1, 
UNITED NATIONS — Iceland is announcing a U.N. conference on women and 
gender equality — and only men and boys are invited.

The country's foreign affairs minister told the U.N. General Assembly of 
world leaders on Monday that the January "barbershop" conference will be unique, 
"as it will be the first time at the United Nations that we bring together only 
men leaders to discuss gender equality."
Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson said the conference convened by his country and 
Suriname will be an "exceptional contribution" to events marking the 20th 
anniversary of a landmark U.N. conference on women in Beijing.
"We want to bring men and boys to the table on gender equality in a positive 
way," Sveinsson said. He said the meeting will have a special focus on violence 
against women.
The unusual conference is part of a global campaign launched this month to 
get 100,000 men and boys involved in the fight for gender equality, which the 
United Nations had hoped would be achieved by 2015. That deadline won't be met; 
in an interview this year, the head of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, said 
projections indicate that if things don't change, achieving gender equality will 
take 95 years.
At the "HeForShe" campaign launch this month, actress Emma Watson explained 
the urgent need to bring men into the fight for gender equality.
"In 1995, Hillary Clinton made a famous speech in Beijing about women's 
rights," Watson said. "But what stood out for me the most was that only 30 
percent of her audience were male. How can we affect change in the world when 
only half of it is invited or feel welcome to participate in the 
The 1995 conference featured Clinton, then first lady, galvanizing global 
leaders with her now-famous declaration that "women's rights are human rights." 
Nearly 190 countries adopted a platform to achieve equality for women, which has 
become the blueprint for action by the global community on the issue.
Iceland and Suriname are now leading a group of countries to stir up support 
for gender equality as the anniversary of the landmark Beijing meeting 
Earlier this year, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Clinton will play 
an important role in next year's anniversary celebration, and Clinton said she 
looks forward to working with Ban on an issue "of such great global 
At a separate event this year, Clinton said that in the nearly two decades 
since Beijing, "women and girls still comprise the majority of the world's 
unhealthy, unfed and unpaid." She urged the U.N. to include gender equality at 
the forefront of its new goals to promote development.
Iceland and Suriname fall at nearly opposite ends of global rankings on 
women's rights. The Global Gender Gap Report 2013 compiled by the World Economic 
Forum ranked Iceland top in gender equality in economic, health and other 
matters. Suriname, the tiny South American country, was ranked 110th.
The Forum hosts the annual gathering of global business and political leaders 
in the Swiss ski resort of Davos every winter.

Posted By  Blogger  to Dignity Television on  10/03/2014 02:32:00 am
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