For the millions of women and girls displaced by conflicts across the globe, it has been a summer of extreme hardship. As a seemingly unbroken series of crises have unfolded from South Sudan to Mount Sinjar, from Gaza to Syria, women and girls comprise the majority of those displaced. They endure further torment as rates of rape, domestic violence and early marriage skyrocket in times of crisis. As Syrian women and girls confirm in a new report, without a change in approach by the international community, women around the world will have little relief from the ongoing violation of their human rights.
In the past 14 years, the UN Security Council has passed no less than seven resolutions on the role of women in peacebuilding, including 1325, a landmark resolution that asserted that women are uniquely burdened by armed conflict and are critical to resolving it. In 2005, UN agencies and their partners outlined—and agreed upon—key actions (better known to humanitarians as the IASC guidelines), which, if implemented during a humanitarian response, would better protect women and girls from violence.