The account provided by Morocco shows the need to include women in all peace and negotiation processes and to take necessary measures to prevent insecurity and to implement 1325. Shaping a new definition of security that is more human and more gender sensitive.

“Compared to many other countries in the MENA region, one can state that Morocco is on the ‘safe side’ when it comes to the promotion of women’s rights.

A process of legal reforms was launched in 2002 namely the family code which recognises the joint responsibility of both husband and wife and the new constitution which states the supremacy of international laws.

Yet, many of the amendments are bound and conditioned to comply with Sharia law that definitely hinders their fulfilment and their implementation on the ground. Some include examples of male attitude towards women, which enhances social and economic poverty, lack of empowerment that reduces women’s vulnerability, insecurity and exclusion.

Effects of the Conflict with Western Sahara

For forty years Morocco has embarked on the Western Sahara conflict which neither side has chosen. This has certainly depressed the economy, increased gaps and resulted in an alarming conflict at the expense of women’s needs and interests. Many voices have called for the involvement of women in the negotiations taking place nationally and internationally to put an end to this conflict and the sufferings on both sides but it seems that men still need time to trust women and accept them on the same tables.

What Morocco asks of the International Community

Today, as Moroccan feminists, we are here to hold the international community accountable for all their promises to involve women in all peace and negotiation processes, and for their willingness to take necessary and urgent measures to prevent insecurity and to implement UNSCR 1325 in Morocco.

We are also here with our colleagues from the MENA region to claim our space and our role as citizens to ensure peace and security for all and to contribute to the shaping of a new definition of security that is more humane and more gender sensitive.

We aspire for more concrete measures that value the role of women and men on an equal footing and for more initiatives to invest in peace and security programmes.

Finally, we would like to ensure that women are determined to fight for no further exclusion. Today the ‘air’ is ours and the threats are big, let us not miss the opportunity to create the change we all want to see.”