Response to the Secretary General’s Presentation of the Annual Evaluation Report on Implementation of the 2004 OSCE Action Plan for the Promotion of G

As delivered by Ambassador Daniel B. Baer
to the Permanent Council, Vienna
July 3, 2014

The United States thanks the Secretary General for this comprehensive report.  The United States supports efforts to integrate a gender perspective into policies, programs, projects, and activities in all three OSCE dimensions.

Each year the Secretary General’s report describes the disappointing reality that women hold few positions of leadership either in the governments of OSCE participating States or within the structure of this Organization itself.  Qualified female candidates exist across the OSCE space – looking around this room, we can see overwhelming evidence of it.  We urge all participating States to ensure their recruiting strategies prioritize diversity and inclusion – in particular, given the topic today, with respect to gender.  We appreciate the work of OSCE Senior Adviser on Gender Issues, Ambassador Miroslava Beham, and that of the Special Representative of the OSCE Chairmanship on Gender issues, June Zeitlin, to address this issue, and expect that diversity, including gender diversity, will continue to be taken into account in all recruitment decisions.

At next week’s Gender Equality Review Conference, the United States looks forward to hearing what the OSCE has achieved over the past decade in terms of integrating a gender perspective into comprehensive security, and what work remains to be done.  The United States continues to support measures aimed at correcting the underlying injustice of gender inequality and discrimination.  We remain committed to unlocking the power and potential for progress that women and girls represent throughout the OSCE region and around the world.  The barriers that bar the full participation of women in the economic, social, and political lives of their countries, be they overt or concealed, written or unwritten, must be demolished in order to maximize the peace and prosperity of all nations.

Thank you, Mr. Chair.