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Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, 1995

Published September 1995

The Beijing Declaration of 1995 was produced at the fourth World Conference on Women in September 1995.

BEIJING DECLARATION
1. We, the Governments participating in the Fourth World Conference on Women,
2. Gathered here in Beijing in September 1995, the year of the fiftieth
anniversary of the founding of the United Nations,
3. Determined to advance the goals of equality, development and peace for all
women everywhere in the interest of all humanity,
4. Acknowledging the voices of all women everywhere and taking note of the
diversity of women and their roles and circumstances, honouring the women
who paved the way and inspired by the hope present in the world's youth,
5. Recognize that the status of women has advanced in some important respects
in the past decade but that progress has been uneven, inequalities between
women and men have persisted and major obstacles remain, with serious
consequences for the well-being of all people,
6. Also recognize that this situation is exacerbated by the increasing poverty
that is affecting the lives of the majority of the world's people, in
particular women and children, with origins in both the national and
international domains,
7. Dedicate ourselves unreservedly to addressing these constraints and
obstacles and thus enhancing further the advancement and empowerment of
women all over the world, and agree that this requires urgent action in the
spirit of determination, hope, cooperation and solidarity, now and to carry
us forward into the next century.

We reaffirm our commitment to:
8. The equal rights and inherent human dignity of women and men and other
purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, to
the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human
rights instruments, in particular the Convention on the Elimination of All
Forms of Discrimination against Women and the Convention on the Rights of
the Child, as well as the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence
against Women and the Declaration on the Right to Development;
9. Ensure the full implementation of the human rights of women and of the girl
child as an inalienable, integral and indivisible part of all human rights
and fundamental freedoms;
10. Build on consensus and progress made at previous United Nations conferences
and summits - on women in Nairobi in 1985, on children in New York in 1990,
on environment and development in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, on human rights
in Vienna in 1993, on population and development in Cairo in 1994 and on
social development in Copenhagen in 1995 with the objective of achieving
equality, development and peace;
11. Achieve the full and effective implementation of the Nairobi Forwardlooking
Strategies for the Advancement of Women;
12. The empowerment and advancement of women, including the right to freedom of
thought, conscience, religion and belief, thus contributing to the moral,
ethical, spiritual and intellectual needs of women and men, individually or
in community with others and thereby guaranteeing them the possibility of
realizing their full potential in society and shaping their lives in
accordance with their own aspirations.
We are convinced that:
13. Women's empowerment and their full participation on the basis of equality
in all spheres of society, including participation in the decision-making
process and access to power, are fundamental for the achievement of
equality, development and peace;
14. Women's rights are human rights;
15. Equal rights, opportunities and access to resources, equal sharing of
responsibilities for the family by men and women, and a harmonious
partnership between them are critical to their well-being and that of their
families as well as to the consolidation of democracy;
16. Eradication of poverty based on sustained economic growth, social
development, environmental protection and social justice requires the
involvement of women in economic and social development, equal
opportunities and the full and equal participation of women and men as
agents and beneficiaries of people-centred sustainable development;
17. The explicit recognition and reaffirmation of the right of all women to
control all aspects of their health, in particular their own fertility, is
basic to their empowerment;
18. Local, national, regional and global peace is attainable and is
inextricably linked with the advancement of women, who are a fundamental
force for leadership, conflict resolution and the promotion of lasting
peace at all levels;
19. It is essential to design, implement and monitor, with the full
participation of women, effective, efficient and mutually reinforcing
gender-sensitive policies and programmes, including development policies
and programmes, at all levels that will foster the empowerment and
advancement of women;
20. The participation and contribution of all actors of civil society,
particularly women's groups and networks and other non-governmental
organizations and community-based organizations, with full respect for
their autonomy, in cooperation with Governments, are important to the
effective implementation and follow-up of the Platform for Action;
21. The implementation of the Platform for Action requires commitment from
Governments and the international community. By making national and
international commitments for action, including those made at the
Conference, Governments and the international community recognize the need
to take priority action for the empowerment and advancement of women.

We are determined to:
22. Intensify efforts and actions to achieve the goals of the Nairobi Forwardlooking
Strategies for the Advancement of Women by the end of this century;
23. Ensure the full enjoyment by women and the girl child of all human rights
and fundamental freedoms and take effective action against violations of
these rights and freedoms;
24. Take all necessary measures to eliminate all forms of discrimination
against women and the girl child and remove all obstacles to gender
equality and the advancement and empowerment of women;
25. Encourage men to participate fully in all actions towards equality;
26. Promote women's economic independence, including employment, and eradicate
the persistent and increasing burden of poverty on women by addressing the
structural causes of poverty through changes in economic structures,
ensuring equal access for all women, including those in rural areas, as
vital development agents, to productive resources, opportunities and public
services;
27. Promote people-centred sustainable development, including sustained
economic growth, through the provision of basic education, life-long
education, literacy and training, and primary health care for girls and
women;
28. Take positive steps to ensure peace for the advancement of women and,
recognizing the leading role that women have played in the peace movement,
work actively towards general and complete disarmament under strict and
effective international control, and support negotiations on the
conclusion, without delay, of a universal and multilaterally and
effectively verifiable comprehensive nuclear-test-ban treaty which
contributes to nuclear disarmament and the prevention of the proliferation
of nuclear weapons in all its aspects;
29. Prevent and eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls;
30. Ensure equal access to and equal treatment of women and men in education
and health care and enhance women's sexual and reproductive health as well
as education;
31. Promote and protect all human rights of women and girls;
32. Intensify efforts to ensure equal enjoyment of all human rights and
fundamental freedoms for all women and girls who face multiple barriers to
their empowerment and advancement because of such factors as their race,
age, language, ethnicity, culture, religion, or disability, or because they
are indigenous people;
33. Ensure respect for international law, including humanitarian law, in order
to protect women and girls in particular;
34. Develop the fullest potential of girls and women of all ages, ensure their
full and equal participation in building a better world for all and enhance
their role in the development process.

We are determined to:
35. Ensure women's equal access to economic resources, including land, credit,
science and technology, vocational training, information, communication and
markets, as a means to further the advancement and empowerment of women and
girls, including through the enhancement of their capacities to enjoy the
benefits of equal access to these resources, inter alia, by means of
international cooperation;
36. Ensure the success of the Platform for Action, which will require a strong
commitment on the part of Governments, international organizations and
institutions at all levels. We are deeply convinced that economic
development, social development and environmental protection are
interdependent and mutually reinforcing components of sustainable
development, which is the framework for our efforts to achieve a higher
quality of life for all people. Equitable social development that
recognizes empowering the poor, particularly women living in poverty, to
utilize environmental resources sustainably is a necessary foundation for
sustainable development. We also recognize that broad-based and sustained
economic growth in the context of sustainable development is necessary to
sustain social development and social justice. The success of the Platform
for Action will also require adequate mobilization of resources at the
national and international levels as well as new and additional resources
to the developing countries from all available funding mechanisms,
including multilateral, bilateral and private sources for the advancement
of women; financial resources to strengthen the capacity of national,
subregional, regional and international institutions; a commitment to equal
rights, equal responsibilities and equal opportunities and to the equal
participation of women and men in all national, regional and international
bodies and policy-making processes; and the establishment or strengthening
of mechanisms at all levels for accountability to the world's women;
37. Ensure also the success of the Platform for Action in countries with
economies in transition, which will require continued international
cooperation and assistance;
38. We hereby adopt and commit ourselves as Governments to implement the
following Platform for Action, ensuring that a gender perspective is
reflected in all our policies and programmes. We urge the United Nations
system, regional and international financial institutions, other relevant
regional and international institutions and all women and men, as well as
non-governmental organizations, with full respect for their autonomy, and
all sectors of civil society, in cooperation with Governments, to fully
commit themselves and contribute to the implementation of this Platform for
Action.

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