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    UNIS/OUS/346
    5 July 2016

    Women Higher Education for Peace Vienna Forum

    VIENNA, 5 July (UN Information Service) - The first Women Higher Education for Peace Vienna Forum opened at the Vienna International Centre today. The two-day event, which is organized by the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) at Vienna, brings together more than 500 participants from all over the globe, including professionals working in disarmament, non-proliferation and development within various international organizations, the private sector and the NGO community.

    The aim of the event is to support the participation of women in peace-related decision-making processes.

    In his video message for the opening of the Forum, Kim Won-soo, Under Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, said: "Disarmament is not only good for women: women are good for disarmament. The adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals has highlighted the reinforcing nature of durable peace and gender equality. Gender-sensitive disarmament is more inclusive and, therefore, more effective."

    The Forum is being complemented by a job fair and career development workshops taking place on Wednesday, 6 July, which will showcase career opportunities in peace-related fields, and build bridges between young professionals and potential employers.

    To support the participation of women from the Global South in the Forum, 30 scholarships were made available to female early career professionals from 30 different countries and various professional backgrounds. The scholarship recipients were selected from a total of 180 applications by a panel of experts from the UNODA Office at Vienna, as well as the Vienna Centre for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation and the UN-mandated University for Peace (UPEACE).

    The event is part of a wider initiative called "Women Scholarship for Peace: Global South" which provides training courses for women from the Global South on disarmament, non-proliferation and peace.

    Background

    The United Nations Security Council has recognized that it is critical that women participate in decision-making processes in the international peace and security arena (UNSCR 1325). Unfortunately, there is a clear gender gap in this area, especially among early career professionals in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation.

    It is important for both men and women to encourage the participation of women on peace-related questions, in developing public policies and laws, as well as in decision making processes. The Women Higher Education for Peace Vienna Forum aims at bringing attention to this subject.

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    To learn more, and for the programme of the Vienna Forum go to: https://www.dnpeducation.org/index.php

    Live webcast: www.dnpeducation.org

    Follow us on Twitter: @DNPEduPartner and #Edu4Peace

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    For more information and interview requests, please contact:

    Reka Furtos
    Public Information Officer, UNIS Vienna
    Telephone: (+43-1) 26060-83019
    Mobile: (+43) 699-145-83019
    Email: reka.furtos[at]unvienna.org