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The following text is adapted from the press release published by WomenAction 2000. For further information in English contact info@womenaction.org or pugh@iiav.nl or on the web site http://www.iiav.nl/european-womenaction-2000. Et pour le français penelope@planete.net.

Five years after Beijing
Women use the Internet to hold Government accountable

The Global WomenAction 2000 network web site will be launched on November 25th 1999. WomenAction is a global coalition of international and regional information, communication and media networks. It aims to enable NGOs to actively engage in the Beijing+5 review process for women's empowerment, with a special focus on women and media.

The WomenAction Global website provides women's organisations with a platform that links regional activities strategizing around the Beijing Platform of Action review process. It has a special focus on Women and Media (Section J of the Beijing Platform For Action) with information on how NGOs can get involved in online critical discussions, create an alternative global report on Section J and highlight the work of women's groups to redress women's portrayal and position in the media.

The website is hosted and managed by the WomenAction Network. Content is provided by the national and regional members of WomenAction 2000 including AWORC (The Asian Women's Resource Exchange), FLAME (African Sisters Online), European WomenAction 2000, ALAI (Ecuador) and ISIS Chile.

WomenAction is co-ordinated by the International Women's Tribune Centre (IWTC) and the Association For Progressive Communications Women's Networking Support Programme (APC WNSP). WomenAction Steering committee members include ALAI/Ecuador; APC/WNSP/Africa/Canada/Latin America/UK; AWORC/Manila/Tokyo; IIAV/Netherlands; Isis International/Philippines; Isis Internacional/Chile; Isis-WICCE/Uganda IWTC; WFS/India.

The Context

In June 2000, the United Nations will review the agreements made at the 4th World Conference on Women. This is the so-called Beijing + 5 review. The Platform identified 12 Critical Areas of Concern for women's advancement and empowerment: Poverty, Education & Training, Health, Violence, Armed Conflict, Economy, Decision Making, Institutional Mechanisms, Human Rights, Media and Environment.

In March 1999, at the first PrepCom for Beijing Plus Five in New York, three NGO working groups were formed to discuss;

  • the Beijing Plus Five overall framework;
  • NGO access and participation problems;
  • NGO alternative or shadow reports on the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action.

Concurrently, women's media networks, both global and regional, met as a Global Communications Forum with many NGOs, and discussed ways in which women could remain in touch once they returned home to their regions and countries, and be able to participate fully in the review process. Out of this Forum came the initial plans for this WomenAction 2000 Network.

The Beijing Platform for Action was made possible by the continued efforts of women around the globe to advance the position of women. Using all technologies and facilities at their disposal, from street rallies to political lobbies, from spreading information through magazines to organising conferences, women have worked to improve their lives and those of their sisters. Now, at the end of the millennium, they have called on global women's information and communication networks to develop a platform on which they can continue this work using the latest in communications technology.

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ISSN: 1664-834X Copyright © , Alan McCluskey, info@connected.org
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Created: November 26th, 1999 - Last up-dated: November 26th, 1999