Time for Congress to Take the Lead on Inclusive Security

   •    March 21, 2016

This article was originally published by The Hill.

Consider an all-too-familiar scenario. A civil war smolders, hundreds of thousands have died. With U.S. interests at stake, we’ve invested billions of dollars and countless hours of diplomacy to convince the warring parties to reach an agreement. These negotiations aren’t just about securing a temporary ceasefire; they will lay the foundations for long-term peace. Yet half the population is missing. How likely is it that these efforts will end the conflict for good? Tomorrow peace and security experts will tell the House Foreign Affairs Committee the chances are slim.

Women’s inclusion in peace and security processes is vital to the effectiveness and long-term sustainability of these efforts, yet by and large women continue to be systematically excluded. This is not just an issue of women’s rights; it hurts the U.S.’s ability to address the many global challenges that are key to our diplomatic, development, and defense work. Decades of research shows us: From negotiating a peace agreement in Syria to combating the spread of ISIS, women’s inclusion must be a core priority.

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