Beijing+20: “The beginning of the end of gender equality,” says UN Women Executive Director

In her opening remarks at a global event on 26 June to launch UN Women’s Beijing+20 campaign, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka urged men and women across the world to strengthen their collective resolve to advance gender equality.

The campaign marks 20 years since the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995 set out a road map for women’s rights and empowerment.

The vision laid out in Beijing with 12 critical areas of concern for women still resonates deeply around the world. It is still unfinished business.

Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka identified the following key areas where action was still needed:


  • Reduce women’s share of poverty
  • Improve access to health and education
  • End violence against women
  • Ensure women’s full participation in decision-making
  • Ensure women’s equal opportunities in the economy
  • Remove gender stereotypes and increase women’s role in the media, and
  • Protect the human rights of all women and girls.


She also paid tribute to Salwa Bughaigis, the Libyan human rights activist who was assassinated on June 25 in Benghazi, Libya.

The UN Women Beijing+20 campaign is called,“Empowering women, empowering humanity: Picture It!” It is being globally, including by the Australian National Committee for UN Women.