African Press International (API)

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Norway is to be at the forefront of the fight for women’s rights

Posted by African Press International on August 19, 2013

Women’s rights are increasingly coming under pressure in many countries. Today the Government launched its new Action Plan for Women’s Rights and Gender Equality in Foreign and Development Policy. Norway is, and will continue to be, at the forefront of the fight for women’s rights internationally, and we intend to increase our efforts through our embassies.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Espen Barth Eide commented, “We are constantly seeing examples of the weak position of women’s rights in the world. In several countries, these rights are coming under pressure. At the same time we see courageous women and men who are standing up and fighting for gender equality and women’s dignity. For example, the Pakistani schoolgirl Malala’s campaign has impressed people all over the world, including in Norway. Norway intends to play its part. That is why we are increasing our engagement all over the world in the fight for women’s rights and gender equality.”

Today the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of International Development presented a joint plan of action for Norway’s efforts to lift the issue of women’s rights and gender equality higher up the international agenda. The plan emphasises the importance of strengthening the Foreign Service’s efforts through concrete guidelines, systematic gender assessment, and enhanced training. The aim is for all employees at Norwegian missions abroad to be ambassadors for gender equality.

Minister of International Development Heikki Eidsvoll Holmås commented, “Gender equality doesn’t happen by itself. We know that from our experience here in Norway. Norway will therefore be a clear and fearless voice for women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights. We intend to pursue the most effective development policy possible with a view to ensuring that all women have access to contraception and safe abortions.”





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