254 NGOs call on Member States to address gender discrimination in nationality laws during WPS Open Debate
In advance of the UN Open Debate on Women, Peace, and Security (October 25), the Global Campaign for Equal Nationality Rights joined 253 NGOs from 55 countries in signing the NGO Working Group on Women, Peace, and Security's Open Letter, which calls on Member States to provide an outline of concrete steps taken to reform gender discriminatory nationality laws, where relevant, in addition to other key actions needed to advance the Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) agenda.
The Security Council has noted the link between gender discriminatory nationality laws and the exacerbated vulnerability of women fleeing conflict on a number of occasions, including in UN Security Council Resolution 2122 (2013) and subsequent Open Debates on WPS and the Protection of Civilians in Conflict.
When families from countries with gender-discriminatory nationality laws are forced to flee conflict areas, the portion of the population harmed by these laws can increase exponentially. In contexts of displacement, where fathers are often separated from their families, discriminatory nationality laws increase the risk that children born to refugee women will be rendered stateless. Today, with the greatest displacement since World War II, forced displacement and migration from countries with gender-discriminatory nationality laws threatens to create a new generation of stateless children. In addition to the increased number of families harmed by gender-discriminatory nationality laws in contexts of displacement, these laws cause already vulnerable populations of refugees, internally displaced persons, and persons living in conflict contexts to be even more insecure.