The mission of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) in the United Nations Secretariat is to plan, prepare, manage and direct United Nations peacekeeping operations so that they can effectively fulfil their mandates under the overall authority of the Security Council and General Assembly, and under the command vested in the Secretary-General. DPKO is a member of UN Action Against Sexual Violence in Conflict. DPKO provides political and executive direction to UN Peacekeeping operations around the world and maintains contact with the Security Council, troop and financial contributors, and parties to the conflict in the implementation of Security Council mandates. Within the purview of mandates of the respective missions, with due reference to relevant Security Council resolutions, DPKO works to prevent and respond to conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV).
Towards implementing its specific mandates on Women, Peace and Security (WPS), DPKO works to address all forms of sexual and gender-based violence against women, including sexual exploitation and abuse by civilian and uniformed peacekeeping personnel.
As each functional unit of peacekeeping has direct responsibility for supporting prevention and response to sexual and gender-based violence, specific activities are mission and mandate specific. The women, peace and security architecture in the Missions represented through the presence of gender affairs units, senior gender advisers, senior women protection advisers, gender specialists and advisors in uniform and the gender focal persons across the different functions and components of a peacekeeping mission have improved partnerships with variety of actors, including women’s groups, host government, regional bodies and other United Nations entities to strengthen achieving results on promotion of gender equality and addressing sexual and gender-based violence against women. Specific focus areas for addressing SGBV include identifying and implementing targeted actions in planning and implementing of protection of civilian strategies and community violence reduction programmes that identify particular risks and threats faced by women, contributing to strengthening institutional response mechanisms/referral pathways for SGBV survivors, providing targeted trainings and context specific guidance to address SGBV risks faced by women and girls , investing in analysis that identify structural issues which perpetuate SGBV and fuel conflicts and contribute to establishing gender responsive national security and justice mechanisms, including legal frameworks to address SGBV.
In missions with a CRSV mandate, Women’s Protection Advisers, engage in a dialogue with parties to the conflict to elicit formal commitments from their leaders on preventing and addressing CRSV in accordance with their international obligations.
Gender Unit: An updated Gender Equality and Women, Peace and Security Resource Package is being finalized which includes dedicated chapters on CRSV and SGBV. This comprehensive resource tool will act as the main comprehensive resource and a View More
Gender Unit: An updated Gender Equality and Women, Peace and Security Resource Package is being finalized which includes dedicated chapters on CRSV and SGBV. This comprehensive resource tool will act as the main comprehensive resource and a “how to guide” to integrate gender and WPS for all peacekeeping personnel across all components and functions of peacekeeping operations; and will provide good practices to enhance evidence based programming.Hide
Successful collaboration between DPKO and civilian police advisers has resulted in the establishment of special units within police stations to deal with violence against women, provision of private spaces for women to report gender-based violence, and establishment of safe houses for women victims of violence. Drawing from the experience in Sierra Leone, family support units have been established in Liberia. UNIFEM also supports the creation of specialised institutions, such as police gender desks.Hide
DPKO gender units support regional and national initiatives to respond to gender-based violence, for example by working with national machineries for the advancement of women as is the case in Haiti, Timor-Leste, Kosovo and Burundi. DPKO civilian police advisers in missions assist local police in crime prevention and investigation.Hide
The Civilian Police Section of DPA/United Nations Peace-building Office in the Central African Republic (BONUCA) conducted training for national gendarme officers on human rights issues and gender-based violence. DPKO Gender Advisers have partnered with UNPOL to highlight gender-based violence in training for National Police.Hide
In Sierra Leone, Liberia, Burundi and Haiti, DPKO gender units/advisors contribute to national consultative processes on reform and adoption of legislation on violence against women generally, or on issues such as rape or domestic violence. Such units/advisers provide support to national authorities, including ministries of gender equality or justice, and law reform commissions.Hide
Peace Operations regularly support national legal, judicial and correctional institutions in gender-sensitive reform processes, including legal and policy reform. Peacekeeping missions, in partnership with the UNCT and the women civil View More
Peace Operations regularly support national legal, judicial and correctional institutions in gender-sensitive reform processes, including legal and policy reform. Peacekeeping missions, in partnership with the UNCT and the women civil society actors have been supporting gender responsive legislative development, including addressing SGBV and VAW. Particular missions to mention – Haiti (MINUJUSTH), CAR (MINUSCA), DRC(MONUSCO), Mali(MINUSMA) and Sudan (with UNAMID)Hide
Several DPKO missions have supported, or implemented training activities for mission personnel and other stakeholders on gender-based violence against women, as in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone and Timor-Leste.Hide
DPKO gender units/advisers collaborate and partner with different units within a peacekeeping mission to combat violence against women, in particular those dealing with human rights, conduct and discipline, children, or HIV/AIDS, as is the case in Burundi. DPKO gender units in peacekeeping missions increasingly participate in country-based United Nations inter-agency initiatives and mechanisms to address gender-based violence against women, for example in Haiti, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Liberia, Sudan and Burundi.Hide
In West Africa, DPKO Gender Advisers from missions in Cote d’Ivoire, Sierra Leone and Liberia (ONUCI, UNIOSIL and UNMIL) have attended a regional meeting to share best practices and lessons learnt for addressing SGBV.Hide