Canada’s statement on Other Disarmament Measures and International Security to the First Committee of the 73rd session of the United Nations

Statement delivered by Mr. Falco Mueller-Fischler

73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly - First Committee

New York, October 2018

Mr. Chair,

Advancing international peace and security depends on our collective ability to recognize and account for the gender dimensions of non-proliferation, arms control, and disarmament. Integrating gender perspectives into this work requires systematic and dedicated efforts.

Canada prioritizes these efforts in line with our Feminist Foreign Policy. We believe that advancing gender equality, including in the disarmament field, is the most effective way to build a more peaceful, inclusive, and prosperous world.

We are deeply committed to the international Women, Peace, and Security Agenda. Our second National Action Plan includes specific targets for disarmament and gender mainstreaming across our international work. Our leadership includes hosting discussions on disarmament within the Groups of Friends of WPS in New York and Geneva last spring, and ongoing discussions and capacity building on the gender dimensions of non-proliferation, arms control, and disarmament in Geneva this year.

Applying a feminist lens to disarmament provides essential perspectives on how Governments can prevent and respond to violence and conflict and better support victims of violence. To effectively address these issues requires the development and implementation of gender-responsive, evidence-based multilateral and national policies. This includes using sex and age disaggregated data and research to rigorously assess the gendered impact of armed violence and consultations including with civil society organizations, survivors of armed violence and gender experts.

These policies must then inform our practices. For example, understanding how small arms are used to perpetrate violence against women and girls is critical. Canada is sensitive to how illicit transfers of small arms and light weapons can fuel the differential gendered impact of armed violence. We work to take into account the risk of gender-based violence in our export control assessments and to systematically consider this risk in our broader policies.

To overcome entrenched discrimination and achieve genuine progress, it is essential to empower women to meaningfully engage as full partners in policymaking, programming, and field work in non-proliferation, arms control, and disarmament. This year, Canada has included language in our FMCT resolution that underscores the importance of ensuring the meaningful inclusion of women in the negotiation of a future treaty.

Canada believes that the international community has a responsibility to continue to advance gender and disarmament considerations in all its work. We are pleased to have been involved in such an effort in Geneva this year including training and a concerted effort by a group of states to advocate for gender analyses in more First Committee resolutions. Finally, we welcome the establishment in Geneva of a Disarmament Impact Group to promote dialogue and greater gender-responsive action within disarmament processes.

Thank you.

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