This post is aimed at noting all recommendations from the Arria-formula meeting held on 20 March 2023, in an effort to advance its objective: “Integrating the Human Rights of LGBTI persons into the Council’s Mandate for Maintaining International Peace and Security.” To this end, the recommendations were noted below (without attributions) under the 5 questions that were proposed in the concept note. Links to all statements are provided (including written statements where available), as well as other relevant resources.
Key topics below
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UN field missions
Security Council action I. General recommendations for Security Council members II. Inclusive engagement and participation of LGBTI people III. Humanitarian assistance IV. Accountability and transitional justice V. Engagement with States
Existing Security Council work streams
Women, Peace and Security
Links to statements [159 words]
Briefings by the Independent Expert on SOGI and civil society representatives from Afghanistan and Colombia.
Statements by 12 members of the Security Council.
Statements by the LGBTI Core Group, the EU, BENELUX, Colombia, South Africa, Ireland, Germany and the US Special Envoy.
Other resources [64 words]
The Independent Expert's report on armed conflict, peacebuilding and peacekeeping.
Outright International's post on the meeting.
Security Council Report's post on the meeting.
* This post uses the term LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex), though the intention is to refer to the broadest sexual and gender diversity, including inter alia, queer and asexual and other gender-diverse people, as noted in various statements and UN documents.
"Dear Members of the Security Council, You have so much power to make LGBTI Afghans safe. I hope you are listening. I hope you are writing home to your Capitals, and most importantly, I ask from you to take a concrete action to support the LGBTI Afghans in any way you can. We are counting on you!
"And do not forget that - No one, no one in this earth should face violence, discrimination, torture, humiliation, rape and death penalty because of who they are and who they love!"
42 recommendations addressing 5 questions (from concept note) [1,132 words]
1) UN field missions
How can we increase awareness within UN field missions on the need to better integrate respect for human rights of LGBTI persons into peacekeeping and peacebuilding? How can the Security Council support this integration?
Integrate SOGI into all work of the missions.
Fulfill protection of civilians mandates, including towards LGBTI people. * Notably, this point seems to be agreeable to the Russian Federation as well, although without the same particular protection on the basis of international humanitarian law as the categories of women, children and persons with disabilities.
Ensure LGBTI people can access humanitarian assistance.
Ensure that field missions are aware and sensitive to the specific needs of LGBTI persons on the ground.
Implement contextualized training at all levels, including in peacebuilding missions and with troop- and police-contributing States, as well as for humanitarian actors.
Increase engagement and develop relationships of trust between the missions and LGBTI people.
Promote effective participation of LGBTI people in peacebuilding measures and peace processes, as in the example of Colombia's 2016 Final Agreement.
Improve monitoring and documentation of human rights violations against LGBTI people and LGBTI human rights defenders.
Increase cooperation and coordination across the UN system in sharing information, knowledge, and best practices in UN missions regarding the protection and promotion of LGBTI rights.
2) Security Council action
What can the Security Council do to increase protection for LGBTI persons who have unique needs and vulnerabilities in situations of armed conflict and fragile societies? What tools does the Security Council have to respond to reports of human rights violations and abuses against them?
General recommendations for Council members
Propose language in Security Council outcomes responding to the situation of LGBTI people, with mandates that are sufficiently broad to account for all forms of conflict-related violence against LGBTI people. This may be through specific language on SOGI or inclusive language on conflict-related SGBV or language addressing the needs of groups that are at risk because they are systematically marginalized or experience multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination.
Explicitly refer to monitoring and reporting on SOGI-based violence and discrimination in any resolutions, deliberations and other acts of the Council.
Draw attention to abuses and violations of the human rights of LGBTI people through national statements in the Security Council.
Regularly review the situation of LGBTI individuals in conflicts on the Council's agenda, including by soliciting information from LGBTI human rights defenders and while adopting an intersectional approach to multiple sources of discrimination.
Inclusive engagement and participation of LGBTI people
Engage and support organizations that serve LGBTI people. They provide shelter, food, medicine, psychological care and legal assistance, as well as monitoring.
Facilitate inclusive and meaningful participation of LGBTI persons in decision-making processes in conflict and crisis situations, including in transitional justice processes.
Recommend strengthening capacity for country teams to support the work of the Independent Expert and promote inclusive environments, including in peacebuilding.
Implement survivor-centered and human rights based approaches to conflict-related SGBV in all humanitarian assistance and recovery efforts, including comprehensive specialized services, access to justice, livelihood support, evacuation and emergency response services.
Enable access to legal and safe pathways for LGBTI asylum-seekers, including visas.
Accountability and transitional justice
Establish a more effective accountability framework to respond to gender persecution based on SOGI.
Mandate the ICC to investigate gender-based violence, including in Afghanistan.
Recall that gender-based international crimes serve as the basis for prosecutions and potential convictions (refer also to the new Policy on the Crime of Gender Persecution of the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC and the Framework of analysis for Atrocity Crimes issued by the Secretary-General in 2014).
Monitor, investigate and prosecute all forms of SGBV more systematically.
Call on States to investigate gender-based violence and provide reparations.
Draw upon information from the Human Rights Council.
Ensure that transitional justice mechanisms analyze the scope of violence endured by LGBTI people, promote full redress and foster transformation of the underlying factors leading to such violence.
Support States in strengthening the rule of law and creating processes for accountability and transitional justice, avoiding impunity and promoting a culture of prevention.
Engagement with States
Call to end the criminalization of homosexuality.
Raise human rights violations against LGBTI people in dialogues with States.
Condemn hate speech against LGBTI people.
Urge States to incorporate SOGI in national policies and action plans and national-level contributions to peace and security.
3) Existing Security Council work streams
How can we strengthen and build upon existing Security Council work streams – such as UN Security Council resolution 2475 on the protection of persons with disabilities in conflict, Children and Armed Conflict (CAAC), and Youth, Peace, and Security (YPS) – to include LGBTI persons?
Strengthen intersectional policy approaches that ensure better protection of LGBTI people in conflict situations and across the Council's actions on women, youth and children in armed conflict.
4) Women, Peace and Security
How can we practically expand the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda to promote cross-cutting intersectional identities, including those related to sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression?
Apply the WPS intersectional perspective and its determination that gender equality is inextricably linked to peace and security.
Call on States to take steps to ensure that women and girls benefit from conflict prevention, protection and participation in peacebuilding efforts, including LBT women and girls.
Continue to call for intersectional policy developments and indicator updates. This includes SOGI indicators as societal markers relevant to assessing the progress of the WPS agenda through 1325 national action plans or any other peace and security domestic agendas (A/77/235, paras 28-29).
Ensure that WPS National Action Plans address LGBTI people’s specific protection needs and their participation in peacebuilding.
5) UN reporting
How can the UN Secretariat and Special Representatives of the Secretary-General (SRSGs) improve and increase their reporting on the human rights of LGBTI persons, both in country-specific reports and in annual reports on Conflict Related Sexual Violence (CRSV), WPS, YPS, CAAC?
Integrate LGBTI concerns and perspectives in regular reports to the Security Council.
Meaningfully incorporate the human rights of LGBTI persons living in conflict and crisis situations in all considerations and advocate for their participation in the peace and security agenda and across the work of the Security Council.
Use the good practice of the Assistance Mission in Iraq in 2015, the Fact-Finding Missions in Myanmar and Libya, and the Group of Eminent Experts in Yemen in their monitoring and reporting.
Increase data collection, documentation and reporting on LGBTI people across all relevant Security Council work streams, including country-specific reports.
Develop methodologies for the collection of data on the experiences of LGBTI people, while generating safe spaces to avoid stigmatization and re-victimization.
Increase the visibility of LGBTI people in multilateral documents, programs and response plans.
Incorporate LGBTI rights into the Secretary-General's new agenda for peace.
Links to statements [159 words]
Statements are noted in the order they were delivered. Where we were unable to find a written statement, the link directs to the relevant section of the webcast.
The emojis note Security Council members' position on SOGI in voting on relevant resolutions and amendments (where they did not abstain).
Security Council members
Three Security Council members did not deliver statements:
🏴 United Arab Emirates
The US Special Envoy to Advance the Human Rights of LGBTQI Persons, Ms. Jessica Stern (at Security Council stakeout)
Other resources [64 words]
Outright International's post on the Arria-formula meeting, including recommendations (scroll down) and links to its report on LGBTI people in Afghanistan and its interview with the briefer from Colombia Diversa, Ms. Maria Susana Peralta.
Security Council Report's article in advance of the meeting.
"Reaffirming that parties to armed conflict bear the primary responsibility to take all feasible steps to ensure the protection of civilians and recalls that States bear the primary responsibility to respect and ensure the human rights of all individuals within their territory and subject to their jurisdiction, as provided for by relevant international law."
Security Council resolution 2474(2019) on protection of civilians [PP12]