Angelina Jolie welcomed the initiative from the UK and co-hosts that had led to the meeting and reaffirmed the importance of peacekeeping in addressing challenges to international peace and security.
She highlighted the importance of the commitment to double the number of female UN Peacekeepers within four years. Military effectiveness required women to be considered at all stages of the planning process.
Missions needed the tools to be able to prevent large-scale violence, including sexual violence, as well as to eliminate cases of sexual exploitation and abuse by peacekeepers. Given that the protection of civilians was a core function of peacekeeping, this was vital. It was also impossible for peacekeeping operations to build trust with local communities when women were not engaged from the outset.
Angelina Jolie welcomed the inaugural award of the UN International Military Gender Advocate of the year (given to Major Aichatou Ousmane Issaka from Nigeria for her work in Mali) as evidence of the practical action needed in order to deliver the Women, Peace and Security agenda. She called on states signing the communiqué to live up to their commitments, however challenging. This was not just a moral imperative, but an operational one.