Ottawa to name new ambassador for women, peace and security, Freeland says

Chrystia Freeland also confirmed Canada would spend about $25 million to fund number of initiatives

Canada will create a new ambassador position dedicated to women, peace and security, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said Saturday.

Freeland made the announcement at a meeting of female foreign affairs ministers in Montreal that she co-hosted with Federica Mogherini, the high representative for the European Union.

Freeland did not offer many details but said the new ambassador would help champion feminist-based aid programs and advocate for more female participation in peacekeeping and conflict resolution.

“International and domestic civil society committed to feminism has been telling us that Canada needs to be even more ambitious, and one way to do that is to have a high-level champion for these issues,” she said during her closing remarks.

Freeland also confirmed Canada would spend about $25 million to fund a number of initiatives aimed at combating gender-based violence and promoting women’s participation in peace processes, and would co-chair a global network on women, peace and security with Uruguay in 2020.

The two-day summit brought together at least half of the 30 women who hold foreign affairs portfolios globally, as well as Japan’s foreign minister, who is male, and civil society actors.

Mogherini said the meetings touched on many issues including conflict prevention, combating gender-based violence, and sustainable development goals.

The summit is believed to be the first official summit of female foreign affairs ministers, but she said it wouldn’t be the last.

Mogherini said the group will keep in touch and is planning to meet again next year, just before or after the annual session of the UN General Assembly.

“Without establishing formal networks or organizations, we will simply work as closely as possible together to advance a foreign policy agenda that makes sure the world uses the full potential of its entire population,” she said.

Mogherini says the group collectively decided to eschew issuing a joint communique or statement at the end of the meeting in order to keep the discussions “as open-ended and real as possible.”

And while the meetings will continue, Mogherini said future iterations may not be as formal, or run under the exact same format.

She also highlighted the presence of Japan’s foreign minister, Taro Kono, pointing out that male ministers were also invited to take part.

“We do not want to create a separate box,” she said.

“We want to make sure that women in foreign policy, first of all are visible, secondly connect to each other, and thirdly work with others in a way that makes things advance for women in the world, because we believe it’s also a way to have men advance in the world.”

Following their closing remarks, Freeland and Mogherini were expected to lay flowers at a memorial for the 14 female victims of the 1989 Polytechnique shooting.

Morgan Lowrie, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland arrives at the Office of the United States Trade Representative, Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Just Posted

The Downtown Vernon Association is requesting free parking on Saturdays in 2021 to boost recovery efforts of businesses amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Caitlin Clow - Vernon Morning Star)
Free Saturday parking in Vernon must wait for budget talks

Downtown Vernon Association request to boost shopping local amid pandemic

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Crime up 31 per cent in Vernon in 2019: Statistics Canada

Increase includes a 45 per cent rise in violent Criminal Code violations

Four staff members at the Okanagan Men’s Centre have tested positive for COVID-19 since Oct. 23, 2020. (Adult and Teen Challenge OMC photo)
Four positive COVID-19 cases at Okanagan Men’s Centre

Those affected are staff and have been in isolation since Oct. 23

Three Okanagan College Mechanical Engineering students manufactured 3D printed Trick-or-Treat Bowls to aid in a physically-distanced Halloween experience amid COVID-19. (3D Okanagan Facebook)
Trick-or-treating made safer thanks to Okanagan College students’ project

3D-printed Trick-or-Treat Bowls available for sale ahead of Halloween

RCMP are investigating a trailer fire off Firwood Road on the Westside, discovered Oct. 27. (Google maps image)
RCMP investigate Westside trailer fire

Burned trailer discovered by RCMP Oct. 27 near Fintry

A woman wears a face mask and plastic gloves while browsing books as a sticker on the floor indicates a one-way direction of travel between shelves of books at the Vancouver Public Library’s central branch, after it and four other branches reopened with limited services, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, July 14, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
B.C. reports 234 new COVID cases, 1 death of senior who had attended small birthday party

Roughly 5,700 people are isolating due to being exposed to a confirmed case

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A Tuesday Oct. 27, 2020 apartment fire in Penticton killed two and displaced dozens more. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Fatal Penticton apartment fire deemed accidental

The blaze gutted an apartment building on Tuesday morning, killing two people and displacing dozens

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Interior Health reports seven more COVID-19 cases

Eighty-nine cases remain active, none of whom are currently hospitalized

Burnaby RCMP responded to a dine-and-dash suspect who fell through a ceiling in March 2020. (RCMP handout)
VIDEO: Suspected dine-and-dasher falls through ceiling of Burnaby restaurant

A woman believed to be dashing on her restaurant bill fell through the kitchen ceiling

This Photoshopped version of the crosswalks near the entrance to the Salmon Arm Arts Centre on Hudson Avenue show what is proposed to help create safety for and show inclusivity to the LGBTQ2S+ community. (Salmon Arm Arts Centre image)
Tri-rainbow crosswalk and Progress flag requested to help make Salmon Arm safe

Council will consider budget requests to help make city inclusive to LBGTQ2S+ community

A can of Canada Dry Ginger Ale is shown in Toronto on Thursday Oct. 29, 2020. The maker of Canada Dry Ginger Ale has agreed to pay over $200,000 to settle a class-action lawsuit launched by a B.C. man who alleged he was misled by marketing suggesting the soda had medicinal benefits. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Joseph O’Connal
B.C. man’s lawsuit over marketing of Canada Dry ginger ale settled for $200K

Soda’s maker, Canada Dry Mott’s Inc., denied the allegations and any liability

Animal care manager Tracy Reynolds confirmed the lynx is the same wildcat that was spotted wandering North Kamloops in broad daylight on Sunday, Oct. 25. BC Wildlife Park.
Lynx found wandering Kamloops taken to BC Wildlife Park

While the lynx’s outward appearance was deemed normal, it actually had an abdominal infection

Wild Tiger
AlleyCats Okanagan: Pet of the week

Meet two lovely felines looking for their forever homes

Most Read