In her address Minister Shekerinska expressed gratitude for the invitation to this important Conference which provides an additional contribution to the steps taken in relation to gender equality and noted that Resolution 1325 is the document that acknowledges the unequal status of women, especially in armed conflicts and calls for the application of gender perspectives in moments of crisis, war and moments of building the security system.
On this occasion Shekerinska stressed the commitment of the Ministry of Defence in the area of gender perspectives, and pointed out that although the number of women has been constantly increasing, the policy of attracting and retaining women in the Army as officers, NCOs, soldiers and civilians for the army shall continue.
“In the proposed amendments to the Law on Defence and Law on Army Service, which are currently in the Assembly, the gender component was integrated for the first time in the preamble of the law, which means that as the defence and the Army should respect the principles of fair representation under the Constitution, the entire law should look also be viewed through the prism of equality”, said Shekerinska.
She added that as a result of the work of the Ministry, the barriers to career advancement and the glass ceiling have been brought down. “The numbers are small, but the progress is important. If two years ago we had only one woman Colonel, today we have three. If in the past there were no women on senior positions, for the first time in the history of our country we have a female aide-de-camp to the commander-in-Chief. I think that these are important signals, because the action plans are adopted and forgotten, but the changes remain visible”.
Minister Shekerinska called on the members of parliament to soon pass the new Law on Defence because the amendments to the Law, practically realize the power that is given by NATO. “Since there were no critical issues in the law to which some might open questions, I really expect the necessary two-thirds majority to be secured and I urge all members of parliament and all political parties that have spoken about NATO for the past 30 years to now with push button and show actions, not just words”, concluded Shekerinska.