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Syrian Women and the Refugee Crisis: Surviving the Conflict, Building Peace, and Taking New Gender Roles

Women are deliberately excluded from formal peace negotiations. Work done for the reconstruction of conflict ridden societies, fail torecognize with women’s realities and needs. Despite that, women have remained influential at the grassroots level in peace-building and rehabilitation.

When we look at women just as victims of war, we fail to recognize their capabilities as peace builders. We have seen from conflicts across the world that when women are deliberately excludedfrom formal talks, there are profound negative implications of the same. Their absence contributes to a gender-insensitive approach towards the issues being addressed. Sometimes issues which women are more likely to raise, are often marginalized and sometimes fully excluded. These include issues such assexual violence, abuses by government and rebel security forces, and also the provision of key social services. The parties to war are not the same as parties to peace. To exclude women from the securitysector reforms and also relevant programs, is to derail the likelihood of success and sustainability of these peace programs altogether.

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Photo: UNHCR

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