Armed Forces Division, Prime Minister’s Office of Bangladesh hosted the International Women, Peace and Security Seminar 2022 in Bangladesh on 28 November 2022. It was also co-hosted by Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh, Bangladesh Police and the United Kingdom.
The seminar was inaugurated by the Honorable Prime Minister of Peoples Republic of Bangladesh as the Chief Guest
Honorable Prime Minister of Bangladesh in the Group photograph with international delegates. From front-line left: Chief of Air Staff Chief, Chief of Naval Staff, Chief of Army Staff, Security Adviser, Vice Chief of Nepali Army, Principal Staff Officer, Honorable Prime Minister, Home Minister, Foreign Minister, Education Minister, Cabinet Secretary, Inspector General of Police. Other guests and foreign delegates at the back.
Chief of Defence and their representatives from countries of WPS CHODs Network, representatives from United Nations, friendly nations, various national and international government and non-government organizations, academicians, public and private universities participated in the seminar
The program ran over two days where the seminar was the core event. The seminar was segmented in five sessions on of Women, Peace and Security issues:
- Global aspect of Women, Peace and Security
- National aspect of Women, Peace and Security
- Panel discussion on Challenges for Women in Striking Balance between Professional and Personal Life.
- Annual Conference of WPS CHODs Network 2022
- Finding the Challenges of Women in Conflict Situation at Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals Camp in Bangladesh
The discussion and interactive sessions were vibrant by the spontaneous participation of local and international participants.
Annual Conference of WPS CHODs Network took place as a side event. Members of the network and their representatives joined the conference
Interaction with the women of Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals (FDMN) in Bangladesh was also organized to find the Challenges of Women in Conflict Situation
Chair of WPS CHODs Network Lieutenant General Waker-Uz-Zaman led the visiting team at FDMN Camp in Coxs Bazar, Bangladesh
Participants of the seminar got insights on the plights of Rohingya women during the conflict.
Few striking findings from the discussion came out:
- There had been significant progress in the mainstreaming of women; yet we need to do more.
- Women’s progress is a need for all; when women advance, we all advance.
- Understanding the challenges of women during conflict and disaster situation is a must for all especially for men.
- Creating more women friendly work environment has to gain momentum; it is time for action than words.
- Revisiting the role of women in different sectors and creating opportunities for female members at all levels to overcome the stereotypical gender roles.
- Ensuring legal equality between male and female service members; that includes recruitment system, assignment, posting and career opportunities.
- Ensuring family support initiatives for female service members like maternity leave, childcare facilities in the form of day-care-centre and breast feeding corner, compassionate location assignments etc.
- Providing a safe and confidential reporting and investigation system along with stern penalties for gender based violence and discrimination at all levels.
- Cyberspace carries distinct gendered risks as women which often lead towards self-exclusion from digital spaces. Therefore, gender considerations are to be included in Cybersecurity legislations to ensure safe and constructive digital engagement for women.
- In many cases, WPS issues have been overlooked in formulation of policies; WPS issues are to be incorporated in all national and multinational policies, treaties and agreements.
- Regulations and policies are not enough until it is being implemented bring programmatic changes to reduce barriers for women.