The Gender Unit plays a central role in supporting the implementation of UNAMI's mandate on gender, women, peace and security. As such, the work of the Gender Unit is shaped by the priorities of the mission under UN Security Council resolution 2522 (2020), the tenets of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, subsequent resolutions on Women, Peace and Security and UN DPPA’s Policy on Women and Peace and Security (WPS). UNAMI’s approach to implementing the WPS agenda is gender mainstreaming in all its work: this is not only the responsibility of the gender unit, but of every UNAMI staff member, including senior leadership.
The Gender Unit works closely with the Government of Iraq, civil society organizations and the UN agencies, funds and programs, in particular UN Women, to promote women’s participation in political processes and advance their representation and involvement in all levels of decision-making.
The Gender Unit uses a four-pronged approach to carry out its functions:
- Advice and technical support;
- Partnership building;
Notable activities carried out by the Gender Unit with the support of its partners include a research study on needs and challenges of Iraqi women entering politics, jointly implemented with the Free Iraq Foundation and the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) in 2020. Complementing the work of the Gender Unit, the Women Advisory Group provides a platform for a diverse group of Iraqi women to enable direct lobbying and advocacy for the advancement of the women, peace and security agenda in Iraq.