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July 26, 2007

Morning Reports from Committees, Working Groups, etc

Reports from Committees, Working Groups, and Regional Meetings
Our meeting was called to begin at 8 a.m. We started around 8:30. For health reasons, I couldn't have breakfast until 8:30, so I was unable to take notes on early reports.

Committees that reported:
Communications Committee (ComCom)
Organizational Development (OD)
Peace & Security Working Group
Economic Justice Working Group
Middle East Committee

Extra Report:
Colombian Delegation

Regional Meetings:
European: discussed methods for more cooperation, "security policy," EU constitution, a European newsletter is being produced by the Dutch Section, and European Social Forum.
Middle East: yielded time because they already reported during their plenary last night & with the committee report
Asia Pacific: noted the lack of voices from Pacific countries. India gave a report and are happy to be supported by Ghandi University, Japan reported on the push to change their constitution to allow aggressive militarism, Nepal: we recognize the difficulty of getting to Congress from Nepal and we took a moment to honor Neelam, who has been imprisoned for her WILPF work. New Zealand: Pleased to announce 3 women at the head of government, including the Prime Minister. Also noted that there hasn't been enough progress for indigenous people's rights.

Report on the Manifesto Project
The Boston branch of the US Section worked on synthesizing the comments received yesterday and presented them to the plenary. Comments were allowed from the floor.

Report from the Program Committee
PowerPoint presentation presented while paper copies of the resolutions were being passed out. In 2005, a 1325 Working Group was created, which has not been active. Who can convene this group?
Gender Equality Architecture Reform (GEAR): how WILPF sections can coordinate on a regional level on this issue that is being led by women from the Global South?
Human Rights: indigenous rights, racism - followup on Durbin Conference, right to water, 60th anniversary of Declaration of Human Rights
Economic Justice: find funding and continue to expand the Export Processing Zone (EPZ) project. Women's engagement in trade negotiations and development negotiations. Regional Trade Agreements. Boycott Coca Cola.
Disarmament: biological weapons, conventional weapons - especially cluster munitions, coordinate annual 8 March Seminar. Coordinate annual NGO statement to the Commission on Disarmament (CD), uranium weapons
Environment: adress false solutions to global warming, including bio-diesel, genetically modified food, 2006 mtg emphasized a focus on environmental focus of militarism
Middle East 5 Priorities: Nuclear Free Middle East, Islamophobia, discrimination on basis of race, ethnicity, religion, class, nationally; expand sections in ME with emphasis on Jordan and Egypt; Y-WILPF conference in Jordan planned by Y-WILPFers
LIMPAL Colombia: all sections should subscribe to the boletina from WILPF Colombia - limpalcolombia.org, Continue the focus on economic and political empowerment, esp with displaced women. Coordinated advocacy. Friends of Colombia groups, Colombia as a Commission on the Status of Women 2008 Case Study. WILPF Norway and Switzerland to ask their Foreign Ministries if they're funding the peace negotiations, where are the women. Colombia 1325 Case Study to present at world and regional Social Forums.
Additional Items: Trafficking in Women, Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (including facilitating the accreditation of professional immigrant and refugee women). Campaign Against Imperialism: against the establishment of new and maintenance of US military bases in 121 countries around the world. Another delegation to Cuba: Judy Gallant (Canada) will facilitate this, Cuban Women have asked that it be limited to 10.
International Days of Action: 8 March - Intl Women's Day, 28 April - WILPF's Birthday (fundraising)

Process Suggestion: WILPF choose 5 priority issues: ME, UNSCR 1325, Environment, Peace & Demilitarization,
3 year work plan, what is the objective, who will will work on them,
specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, time-bound

Build WILPF: maintain contact and continue developing core group in Rwanda, Jordan
Strengthen existing sections
Membership Drive - build up to the 100th Anniversary
Section to Section Partnerships: make more transparent, continue good work, establish new partnerships, continue to build solidarity, link with Y-WILPF

100th Anniversary: Mans van Zanderbergen is the current focal point for preparations, This Congress should send an official request to the Netherlands WILPF to host this event, Presentation of the Manifesto, Women's World Peace Forum?

We are few but powerful, let us be many and unstoppable!

Discussion: Want ICC emphasis. English translation of Bergen Report, Global Day of Action Against Poverty, look at violent actions against undocumented persons, peace within the organization as a project, would like more information on Durbin followup, GEAR: bits and pieces from UN that work on women's issues and gender issues are referred to as Gender Equality Architecture, also a power point presentation available from Sam's workshop.

Decisions on next international meetings:
The Congress approved going to India for the next IB meeting. Albania invited WILPF to have the next IB meeting after India in their country. No section has offered to host the next Congress, please ask your sections about this.

Posted by cj at July 26, 2007 8:01 AM


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