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‘Realizing gender equality has a deadline, and it is 2030’ – Lakshmi Puri

UN Women Deputy Executive Director Lakshmi Puri

Washington, June 20 (UITV)- UN Women Deputy Executive Director Lakshmi Puri spoke at the first-ever United State of Women Summit on June 14, 2016. Convened by President of the United States Barack Obama, the Summit gathered inspirational speakers and aimed to discuss key gender equality issues.

In her speech at the summit, Ms. Puri started by saying, “I want to emphasize that I am referring to gender equality and not gender equity as per the invitation we received because our plead is not for fairness and impartiality, but for equal rights and equal opportunities for all women and men everywhere and in all spheres of life. This is not a matter of semantics, but a political statement on the urgency of ensuring equal rights and equal opportunities for all as a precondition for us as a society of fully achieve progress in development, peace, security in human rights.”

The only high-level United Nations officials attending the White House Summit, she spoke about how the Sustainable Development Goals can accelerate action towards achieving gender equality, and the importance of engaging youth in the work to achieve gender equality.

Ms. Puri continued her speech by saying that let us emphasize that no progress can be made in any area without addressing women’s needs and interests and without women and girls as participants and leaders of change.

“Promising to ‘leave no one behind’, the 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals address the fundamental environment, economic and social issues and position the achievement of gender equality and women’s empowerment as a precondition and necessary outcome of sustainable development.” Ms. Puri added.