Page 16

with returnees and relocators significantly bigger, but also more complex.24 This gendered perspective is especially relevant in the context of reintegration and rehabilitation efforts that the UN and many countries are undertaking, given the flow of individuals returning or defecting from violent extremist groups. UN Security Council Resolution 2242 and the 2015 UN Plan of Action to Prevent Violent Extremism call for the participation and leadership of women’s organizations to devise strategies to counter terrorism and violent extremism.25 Meanwhile, gender analysis can reveal nuances of category that reveal the complexity of the issues, such as women who were abducted and forced to join extremist groups. They blur the lines between victim and perpetrator. It can reveal gaps and weaknesses in state security and legal frameworks that unexpectedly create more harm. It also sheds light on the important role of civil society and other community actors who are at the front lines of engaging women and girls, and the complexity that comes with being affiliated with violent extremism. Gender sensitivity in prosecution, rehabilitation and reintegration of FTF is also mandated by UN Security Council Resolution 2396, which “… emphasizes that women and children associated with foreign terrorist fighters returning or relocating to and from conflict may have served in many different roles, including as supporters, facilitators, or perpetrators of terrorist acts, and require special focus when developing tailored prosecution, rehabilitation and reintegration strategies.” The resolution also “stresses the importance of assisting women and children associated with foreign terrorist fighters who may be victims of terrorism, and to do so taking into account gender and age sensitivities.”26

Purpose and methodology Situated at the nexus of Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) and Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE), this report contributes a gendered analysis of approaches to the disengagement, rehabilitation and reintegration of women and girls associated with violent extremism. Drawing on a desk study, key informant interviews and consultations with key policymakers, researchers, practitioners, psychologists, journalists, victims, and former extremists, this report explores the role of the state, civil society, and other important sectors such as the media, education, and economic development. It highlights the gaps in current policies and practice, as well as the solutions that are emerging in part from the experiences and innovations of women-led civil society initiatives and others in addressing the gendered dynamics and impacts of violent extremism and terrorism—from security profiling to sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). The report concludes with practical recommendations for policymakers and programming guidance for practitioners. This report is a product of a joint research initiative conducted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN) in 2017 and 2018. In response to increased civil society engagement, the initiative was undertaken to collate gender-sensitive research on women and girls, their experiences with disengagement, rehabilitation, and reintegration processes and programmes related to violent extremism, and their role as practitioners and peacebuilders in this field. Given the complex dynamics and diverse expressions of violent extremism, cases and examples were sought from different regions and contexts including Europe and North America, Latin America and the Caribbean, North, West, Central and East Africa, the Middle East, South, Central and Southeast Asia. The initiative is in line with the UN Security Council’s call to “conduct and gather gender-sensitive research and data collection on the drivers of radicalization for women, and the impacts of counter-terrorism strategies on women’s human rights and women’s organizations” as stated in UNSCR 2242 (2015).27 While there remains a UNSC Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED) (2018), Current Trends Report. S/RES/2242 (2015) (available at: https://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/s_res_2242.pdf). 26 S/RES/2396 (2017) on Foreign Terrorist Fighters (available at: https://digitallibrary.un.org/record/1327675?ln=en). 27 S/RES/2242 (2015) (available at: https://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/s_res_2242.pdf). 24 25

16

INVISIBLE WOMEN

Profile for Reagan Smith

Invisible Women  

Gendered Dimensions of Return, Rehabilitation and Reintegration from Violent Extremism

Invisible Women  

Gendered Dimensions of Return, Rehabilitation and Reintegration from Violent Extremism