Statement by H. E. Mr. Urmas Paet, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Estonia at the side event "Freedom from Violence for Every Woman and Girl: A Priority for the Post-2015 Agenda"
Ladies and Gentlemen
First, I would like to thank Finland, Liberia and UN Women for
organizing this event to exchange views on the relationship of violence against
women and girls to the post-2015 agenda.
Yesterday the Ministerial Declaration of Commitment to end sexual violence
in conflict was endorsed by many of us. This declaration has a special role –
it is a pledge for commitment and a pledge for not being indifferent to violence.
With that pledge we committed ourselves to bringing an end to sexual violence. Deviating
from the decided path is no longer an option.
Tomorrow I will co-host with my UK colleague a side event focussing on
the role of the International Criminal Court in preventing sexual violence in
conflict. However, today we have taken into focus the more general hindering of
any violence against women and girls. It does not have to be sexual or physical
violence. The gravest violence is not to be seen. This constitutes intimidation
and prevents the empowerment of women and girls. In many societies in crisis we
witness that women and girls are being deterred from their pursuit for
education, and thereby from a better and happier life, through intimidation. Despite
the increasing international focus on this phenomenon, those perpetrators of intimidation
are never held accountable. And, although it is a crime against individuals,
the entire society is prevented from achieving sustainable peace and development because of this intimidation.
Estonia supports the effort to bring this to an end.
course, we ask – how to achieve it? I think that addressing this issue should be
included in the post-2015 agenda as recommended in the High Level Panel report and
substantially incorporated into the post-2015 sustainable development
framework. I call upon states to make respective pledges to bring end to that
kind of violence, because the hopes we put on the sustainable development
process cannot be achieved without unconditional targeting of this topic. A universally
acknowledged SDG with a relevant set of pledges would be a catalyst for achieving
that goal. Together, we can do it.
Thank you for