The Italian Almanac

women fighting for their job

Italian News - October 9

MPs, human rights activists, economists and a Nobel laureate gathered in Florence on Saturday for an international conference on the status of women around the world. The event has been organized to mark the tenth anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women. That meeting in 1995 resulted in the Beijing Declaration, considered a milestone in international efforts to improve the position of women.

The meeting in Florence, entitled Declared Rights, Violated Rights draw together experts from a variety of fields to consider progress over the last decade and to outline the continuing challenges. "The conference hopes to evaluate the 1995 conference's objectives, in terms of subsequent achievements and also the continuing problems in terms of equality and participation," organizers said in a statement.

Speakers included MPs from the Italian and European parliaments, the vice president of Amnesty International Italia, Fosca Nomis, the Syrian Minister for Expatriates Bouthaina Shaaban and Aleya Hammad el Bindari, co-founder of the Suzanne Mubarak International Women's Peace Movement. Amartya Sen, who won the 1998 Nobel Prize for his work on welfare economics, also gave a speech.

The Beijing Declaration was unanimously adopted by 189 countries in September 1995. Drawing some 47,000 participants, the meeting was the largest-ever gathering of government and non-governmental representatives at a United Nations conference. The Declaration and its associated Platform for Action sets out measures for national, regional and international action in 12 critical areas: women and poverty; education and training; health, including reproductive rights; violence; armed conflict; economy; power and decision-making; institutional mechanisms; human rights; media; environment, and the girl child.