On 10 November the UN Economic and Security Council chose Estonia as a member of the Executive Board of the newly created UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women).
The new UN agency, which was created on 2 July, will address women’s rights and equality issues all over the world and implement concrete and focused programmes for improving the situation of women in developing countries. The creation of the agency was preceded by six months of intense negotiations among the UN member states led by the ambassadors of Estonia and Tunisia in order to achieve an agreement on bringing together all of the UN sub-organisations addressing the rights of women under one agency. The agency UN Women, created under the leadership of Estonia and Tunisia, will be led by former president of Chile Michelle Bachelet.
The Executive Board is the governing body of the UN Women agency, which supports the agency on behalf of the member states and monitors the agency’s activities. Estonia was chosen largely thanks to its visible past contributions to promoting women’s rights in the work of the UN. Estonia’s membership status in the Executive Board of the UN Entity for Gender Equality (UN Women) will last until the end of 2012. From 2007-2009 Estonia was the chairman of the Consultative Committee of the UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), which is now a part of UN Women.
There are a total of 41 UN member states on the executive board of UN Women, through which all the regions in the world are represented.
Estonia Chosen as Member of UN Women Executive Board