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TheUnitedStatesofAmericahasbeenanObserverattheSAARCfornearlyadecadenow.

TheformerUNSecretaryGeneralKofiAnnanoncesaid,"OntheveryfirstpageoftheUNCharterisinscribedtheequal
rightsofmenandwomen.Butwhatevertheveryrealbenefitsofinvestinginwomen,themostimportantfactremains:
Womenthemselveshavetherighttoliveindignity,infreedomfromwantandfromfear."
TheSAARChasalwaysbeenproactiveinaffairsrelatedtotheestablishmentandfurtheringofwomensrights.Concerned
overthetraffickingofwomenandchildrenwithinandbetweencountriesintheregion,theSAARCadoptedaRegional
ConventiononCombatingtheCrimeofTraffickinginWomenandChildrenforProstitutioninJanuary2002,duringthe
EleventhSummitinKathmandu.
Attheaforementionedsummit,theLeadersoftheSAARCagreedtomobilizenecessaryresourcesandtointensify
broadbasedactiontoachieveasetofprioritygoalsinimprovingthesocialstatusofwomenandchildren.Theyalso
directedthatnecessarymeasuresbetakentoensurethedevelopmentandempowermentofwomentotheirinherent
potential.
TheThirteenSummit(Dhaka,1213November2005)reiterateditspledgetocontinuetoworkinthenextdecadeand
beyondtoaddresstheformidablechallengesfacedbywomenandchildren,especiallythegirlchild.ThatSummitnotedthat
sustainedeffortswereneededonthepartoftheMemberStatesnotonlytofreethemfromalltypesofdeprivationbutalso
tomakethemfullpartnersandbeneficiariesofSouthAsianprogressanddevelopment,astancewithwhichtheUnited
Statesagreeswithcompletely.
ThedelegatefromtheUnitedStatesbelievesthataveryseriousandlargelyunaddressedworldwidechallengeisthe
deprivationandabuseofwomenandgirls,largelycausedbyafalseinterpretationofcarefullyselectedreligioustextsanda
growingtoleranceofviolenceandwarfareagainstthem.
Womencompriseofmorethanhalftheworldspopulationandthelossestotheworldeconomybecauseoftheinjustices
metedouttothemaremassive.
Evenifsheearnsenoughtolive,awomanwholivesintheshadowofdailyviolenceandhasnosayinhowhercountryis
run,isnottrulyfree.Largerfreedomimpliesthatmenandwomeneverywherehavetherighttobegovernedbytheirown
consent,underlaw,inasocietywhereallindividualscan,withoutdiscriminationorretribution,speak,worshipand
associatefreely.
Allhumanbeingsarebornfreeandequalindignityandrights.TheDeclarationofHumanRightsrepresentsthefirsttime
thatuniversalhumanrightswerespelledoutforallpeopleinacivilandindividualcontext.Ourfaithsallasserttheequality
andfreedomofpeopleweareallbornintofreedomandotherpeoplecanonlymakeusslavesifweacceptandsuccumb.
TheUnitedStateswouldliketoreiteratethefactthatallfaithsdeclaretheunityofhumanbeingsandthefreedomofall.
ThePreambleoftheCharteroftheUNstatesthatthepeoplesoftheUnitedNationshaveintheCharterreaffirmedtheir
faithinfundamentalhumanrights,inthedignityandworthofthehumanpersonandintheequalrightsofmenandwomen
andhavedeterminedtopromotesocialprogressandbetterstandardsoflifeinlargerfreedom.Adheringtoitstrictlywill
greatlyimprovethesituationplaguingtheworldatlarge.
ThedelegateoftheUnitedStatesofAmericaalsobelievesthattheverynotionofgenderisasocialconstruct,andaperson
cannotandshouldnotbediscriminatedagainstinanyformbecauseoftheirgender.Themenandwomenofeverynation
mustbetreatedasequals.
ThecountriesrepresentedinthisforumarerankedrelativelylowintheGlobalGenderGapReport.Theskewed
understandingofreligion,andoutdatedunjustifiedculturalnormsarepartlytoblame.ThedelegatefromtheUSbelieves
thattheconceptofaGenderGapshouldbenonexistent,somuchsothatthereshouldbenorankingsystem.TheUnited
Statesalsobelievesthataffirmativeactionisapossiblesolutiontothisproblem.Reservationforwomenwillresultinan
upliftmentintheirsocioeconomicstatus,andwilldirectlyimpacttheirfamiliesinmorewaysthanone.
Globally,thenumberofgirlsoutofprimaryschoolisabout38million.Thefigurein2005wasabout41million,andthere
hasbeensomeprogressbut38millionisstillaphenomenallylargenumber.TheworldsgovernmentsandtheSAARC,in
particular,asaleaderandmodelofthedevelopingworld,musttakemeasurestocombatthishugefigure.
In2013,45.3ofevery1000infantshadanadolescentmother.Thesegirlsneedtobeinschools,butareexploited.This
exploitationisunjustforboththemotherandthechild,withhugerepercussions.Womenarealsovictimsofbondedlabour
inmanyregions,includingbutnotlimitedto,SouthAsia.ThedelegatefromtheUnitedStatesbelievesthisissueshouldbe
addressedbythiscommitteeaswell.
Lastly,SouthAsiaisthefastestgrowingregionintheworld,andwithcooperation,itcancreatewonders.