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Thursday, April 18, 2024

Women and their Role in Diplomacy

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Women have a vital role to play in diplomacy, both globally and locally. Women can use their influence and power to influence policy and support initiatives for peace-building efforts. They can build networks of powerful advocates, lead diplomatic missions and represent their country as members of the United Nations or other international organizations.

Additionally, women can create dialogue and understanding between nations and people by advocating for human rights and taking action on issues such as climate change, poverty, and gender equality. Women can also be instrumental in conflict resolution and the development of sustainable solutions by utilizing the skills and resources particular to them.

“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made”-Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Women’s Day is an annual celebration honoring the accomplishments, contributions and lasting achievements of women around the world. This day is observed by countries all over the world, usually on or around March 8th each year. It is an important reminder to appreciate the strength and resilience of women and their dynamic roles within society.

This day gives us an opportunity to recognize and applaud the immense efforts, courage and successes of women in the face of adversity. Women’s Day celebrates the incredible power in diversity and recognizes how women are driving progress both in their communities and in the world at large. On this day, we also reaffirm our commitment to creating a more equitable world for all.

As of now, women are active in scientific research, political leadership, entrepreneurial initiatives, educational access, humanitarian work, and many other areas. Women have been influential drivers of technological innovation, playing a crucial role in the founding of companies and startups around the world. They are key participants in policymaking processes at all levels, from local governments to international bodies.

 In addition, women are responsible for preserving and passing down traditional cultural practices and wisdom, defining values and norms across cultures. Women have and continue to be strong advocates in social justice movements, leading the fight against gender inequality and bringing attention to global issues such as health care and climate change. They are powerful agents of progress and change, actively advancing gender equality and driving human development.

Women’s Contributions to the Global Society in contemporary world:

Many current world leaders are taking important steps to further engage and empower female voices. For instance, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has achieved positive changes in her country over the past decade and a half, using her steadfast leadership and diplomacy to bring together diverse political factions.

In addition, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has established gender parity in his Cabinet, making Canada a leader in female representation in government.

Notably, Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand continued to navigate her nation through the COVID-19 pandemic with diplomacy, strength, and respect for diverse opinions. These examples demonstrate the influence women have on global affairs and show the importance of their roles in international relations.

These examples also endorse the importance of women in diplomacy from the top down and show the difference that female world leaders can make.

Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh has been credited with making her nation a leader in regional development. She employed a blend of economic growth strategies, international diplomacy, environmental protection, and government transparency to put Bangladesh on the map as a hub of innovation and progress.

Similarly, President Tsai Ing-wen of Taiwan is a prominent example of using diplomacy to foster regional peace and stability amidst the geopolitical instability between China and Taiwan. Her national initiatives, regional engagement, and commitment to freedom of expression have improved daily life for Taiwanese citizens.

President Sahle-Work Zewde of Ethiopia has become known for her efforts to advance gender equality while she was in the United Nations, and she continues to promote human rights and democracy as the leader of her nation.

Additionally, President Katrin Jakobsdottir of Iceland has been instrumental in advocating for eco-friendly policies, aiming to make the island nation virtually carbon neutral by 2040.

Finally, Prime Minister of the Isle of Man, Julia Robinson has focused her attention on expanding educational opportunities for children on the Island, as well as encouraging economic growth and job creation. These examples show the continued progress being made towards gender parity in diplomacy and the ability of female leaders to drive positive change around the world.

Importance of Female Representation in Diplomacy:

As an Iranian-American, Sanam Naraghi Anderlini has utilized her cross-cultural experiences to promote peace and cooperation in global disputes. As the Founding Director of the International Civil Society Action network, Anderlini works around the world, advocating for the rights of women in conflict zones and hosting workshops to create meaningful dialogues between warring parties. Her achievements in diplomacy demonstrate the positive effects that women can have in historically male-dominated fields.

Into the bargain, Bulgarian economist and diplomat Kristalina Georgieva has set a number of records as the first woman to be named Managing Director of both the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. She has also held leadership positions at the United Nations and other international organizations, proving that women can make significant contributions to global diplomacy.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar has made a number of diplomatic breakthroughs during her tenure, including historic meetings with foreign leaders and negotiations for aid packages with the United States, Germany, and China. As the youngest and first woman ever to serve as Pakistani Foreign Minister, she has advocated for gender equality in the highest echelons of politics and increased her nation’s visibility on the global stage. Her groundbreaking successes prove that women can play an effective role in international diplomacy.

Apart from that, Pakistani filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy used her creativity to advance dialogue on topics such as women’s rights, education, and abuse. She has won two Oscar awards for her documentaries which have showcased the struggles of women in developing countries, giving a voice to those who would otherwise remain unheard. Her accomplishments in promoting equality and social justice illustrate the importance of female representation in diplomacy.

Conclusion:

In a nutshell, history is full of examples that demonstrate the importance and impact of women in diplomatic endeavors. From groundbreaking female leaders such as Sanam Naraghi Anderlini and Kristalina Georgieva to socially-minded individuals like Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy, these examples have shown that women have the power to shape diplomacy and international relations. By providing more opportunities for women to take leadership roles in global affairs, we can ensure on this women’s day that their voices are heard, and their perspectives represented, in international decision-making processes.

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The writer “Eman Mudassar Tarar” is a student of International Relations at Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad and can be reached at emantarar26@gmail.com. She is currently working as a Research intern in the Institute of Peace and Diplomatic Studies. She writes for various media outlets.

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