In 2015 WCLRF launched a research report titled: “Women’s Participation in the Peace Process”. The research targeted HPC’s achievements, challenges and barriers to women’s participation in the peace process and the recommendations which best support women’s participation. The most prevailing recommendations to National Unity Government, HPC and international community were to: increase the number of women in the peace process, establish defined, clear and effective roles for women in the peace process, transfer women’s involvement from informal to formal peace processes, coordinate peace and security efforts among the networks and institutions working for peace, provide the information related on peace for citizens, especially for women, include women’s participation in the national action plan and the plan for the implementing resolution 1325, establish an advocacy committee and /or a practical guideline to follow up with women’s demands, and supports by international community.
To follow up the recommendations of WCLRF’s research report on “Women’s participation in the peace process” in 2015, to develop a guideline for strengthening women’s roles in the peace process, WCLRF conducted a Focused Group Discussion (FGD) on August 22, 2016 with women members of High Peace Council (HPC). The FGD aimed to accumulate rich data for developing the intended guideline: “Engendering the Afghan Peace Process through Meaningful Engagement of Women”.
In this session different topics including women’s impact on peace process, dilemmas in peacemaking and barriers to women’s participation and strategies for meaningful participation were thoroughly discussed. The participants stated women’s challenges and achievements, and provided information on the functionality of new HPC composition, the strategy on which HPC is currently working and the recommendations which support women’s meaningful participation both in peace processes and the other socio-political eras.