Civil Society Global Strategy Meeting on ICPD and Post 2015

IstanbulOn 23-25 January 2015, AIDS Accountability International by the invitation of the UNFPA attended the CSOs and UNFPA Global strategy meeting on the ICPD Beyond 2014 and the Post 2015 development agenda which was held in Istanbul, Turkey.

The objectives of the meetings were to strategize on how CSOs and UNFPA can partner to ensure that the outcomes of the ICPD Beyond 2014 review process are taken forward and integrated in the best possible way into the post 2015 agenda, including through a responsive monitoring and evaluation framework. During the meeting, CSOs and UNFPA organized themselves around:

1. Means of taking outcomes of the ICPD Beyond 2014 review process forward through an M&E framework that would be implemented at national, regional and global levels. This would further build on the outcomes of the Open Working Group, forth coming CPD and General Assembly on the Post 2015 development agenda.

2. Formulation of political strategies and partnerships that would foster integration of the ICPD Outcomes into the Post 2015 development agenda. The political strategies included discussions around the SDGs proposed indicators and the Financing for Development conference to be held in Addis.

3. Finally, the meeting provided an opportunity for regional CSOs to come up with priorities for advocacy and implementation during the course of the Post 2015 development agenda.

UNFPA Executive Director, Dr. Babatunde in response to the deliberations of the meeting gave an overview of the ICPD and its relation to the Post 2015 Development Agenda process. He mentioned that to date the UNFPA had been able to conduct ICPD review which resulted into a resolution during the General Assembly in 2014. Parallel to the ICPD process was the Open Working Group (OWG) that came up with proposed SDGs which he argued were not strong enough with reference to sexual reproductive health and rights. For this reason, he cautioned CSOs to be vigilante during the process of negotiations in order to ensure inclusion of key issues. The UNFPA executive director also emphasized that CSO’s involvement in the process would only be effective if there was common messaging. He pointed out that this common messaging must embrace the following 5 key principles of:

1. Universality
2. Human Right
3. Equality
4. Big Data
5. Diversity

These key principles would ensure that diversity is covered in all discussions throughout the course of the year such as: the Financing for Development Meeting in Addis, the Political Statement at the General Assembly and the Paris for the Climate Summit.

Dr. Babatunde mentioned that if he had an opportunity to determine what should be the priority of the Post 2015 agenda it would be to focus on SRHR but the reality was that there were differences among various stakeholders. Other important issues that he mentioned would be important to focus on in the Post 2015 development agenda would be youth issues, comprehensive sexuality education and repairing the disconnect between capital and New York.

In closing the Dr. Babatunde mentioned that human rights and equality were an important issue to be addressed in the Post 2015 development agenda. With regard to SRHR, he maintained that every person attending the meeting was responsible for ensuring that CSO spoke on voice within the Post 2015 negotiations.