dimension on development
approaches to development emphasize non-discrimination,
attention to vulnerability and empowerment. Women and
girls are among the first victims of discrimination. They
are the most vulnerable and the least empowered in many
protect women's rights, the international community has
created specific standards. In 1979, the United Nations
General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Elimination
of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.
Convention, which entered into force on 3 September 1981,
establishes women's right to non-discrimination on the
basis of sex and affirms equality in international law.
It is monitored by the Committee on the Elimination of
Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
world conferences, including Vienna (1993), Cairo (1994)
and Beijing (1995), have confirmed the strong link between
the gendered nature of violations of human rights and
the advancement of women's rights.
1993 Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action affirmed
the human rights of women as an inalienable, integral
and indivisible part of human rights and demanded that
the equal status and human rights of women be integrated
into the mainstream of United Nations system-wide activity.
mainstreaming has been defined by the United Nations as
the process of assessing the implications for women and
men of any planned action, including legislation, policies
and programmes, in any area and at all levels (ECOSOC
Agreed Conclusions 1997/2).
1998, the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) adopted
resolution 1998/11 on mainstreaming a gender perspective
into the policies and programmes of the United Nations
system, and decided to pay particular attention to what
has been called the "feminization" of poverty,
its causes and remedies. The Organization has now committed
itself to integrating a gender perspective into all areas
of United Nations work, including development.
resolution 2000/5 the Commission on Human Rights affirmed
the need to apply a gender perspective in the implementation
of the right to development, inter alia by ensuring that
women play an active role in the development process.
It emphasized that the empowerment of women and their
full participation on the basis of equality in all spheres
of society is fundamental for society.
its fifty-fifth session, the Commission requested all
human rights treaty bodies, special procedures and the
Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human
Rights to adopt a systematic gender perspective when implementing
their mandates (E/CN.4/RES/1999/41).
accordance with this resolution, OHCHR is endeavouring
to mainstream gender issues both within and outside the
Office. Gender concerns will be reflected in the conceptualization,
implementation and evaluation of human rights policies,
strategic planning, and the setting of priorities and