The Women Network evaluates the year 2005
Croatia neglected the military consequences on women
In its 2005 report, the network of women organizations working in the Republic of Croatia presented the (un) realized expected shifts of the conditions in the country in realizing gender equality. It analyzed the institutional mechanisms in the country, the media, the education, the reproduction rights, the women position at the labor market, the women and the politics, the violence against women, the women trafficking, specially emphasizing the chapter called ”Women and the military conflicts” which begins with the statement that exactly in that statement it has been done least regarding the generally set goals of the National Policy for the period between 2001 and 2005.
“While Croatia celebrates its military victories, or marks the tragedies of the wars, it acts (which is sometimes controversially) as a society where women have not suffered at all or have not participated in any military events whatsoever, although, throughout the world about 80% of the victims were women and children. In that field, Croatia has completely neglected its obligations from the CEDAW Convention, the Beijing Platform and The Security Council Resolution 1325. It is symptomatic that there is no official translation of the Resolution, although at the 587th UN Assembly, the Croatian representative stated the following: Croatia will continue giving its support to the UN efforts to include the gender perspectives in all its activities. Emphasizing the gender equality as an especially important goal, Croatia finds the Security Council Resolution 1325 to be very important for the women, the peace and the security in the context of maintaining the peace and the post-conflict efforts”.
The public in Croatia is not familiar at all with the contents of the UN Security Council Resolution, and the recent marking of the five-year anniversary, which was marked in the whole world, went almost unnoticed. Among the population, war participants, sufferers, refugees and returnees, the specific women interests and needs were not recognized at all. The focus was exclusively put on the military participants in the war, which became an important segment in the work of the Ministry of Family, Intergeneration Solidarity and the Defenders. The consequences of that ‘denial’ are complex and dangerous for the society as a whole. There are no special programmes, no care for the women-victims of military violence, for the women refugees and the women returnees, there is no research done, no broadened awareness on the relation between the militarism, nationalism and the gender problems, no awareness of the connection between the violence and the war consequences. Women are not involved in peace negotiations, in state initiatives or the activities for normalizing the conditions in the region, in the peace processes, etc, although they were the bearers of the peace initiatives and dialogues. There are no policies for healing the war sexual violence consequences” – says among other things the 2005 Women Network Report.
The Women Network asks from the government Office for Gender Equality to incorporate in its programme and priorities collecting data and doing research on the war consequences against the female population, the victims of the military violence, the conditions related to the women rights – victims of violence, to collect information and do research on the conditions and the specific needs of women refugees and returnees, the financial and organizational support to women organizations in the regions that suffered most in the war, special projects for helping women military sufferers, refugees and returnees. The Network members emphasize that they have had the lowest level of cooperation with the Ministry of Science, Education and Sport.
Last year, the women organizations had an insufficient access to the programme-making, policies and laws referring to the women status and they were not parts of the working bodies.
In the year 2005, the members of the Women Network participated with only 8.22% in the allocation of assets of the total national budget for the non-governmental sector.