SOCHUM: Social, Humanitarian, and Cultural Committee

Topic A: Protecting the Rights of Women in Violent Conflict Zones

The rights of women during violent conflict play a crucial role in its resolution and the stabilization of society during and after the conflict has been resolved. Studies show that countries considered to be highly susceptible to violent conflict are much more likely to encounter actual clashes if gender inequality is prevalent. It has been proven that as the presence of women in the public sphere and in government roles increase, especially in conflict resolution, so does stability. As a country begins to face conflict, this discrimination and oppression are considered to deter the possibilities of resolving conflict. In addition to this, Security Council resolutions have been passed to increase the presence of women in regards to peace talks, however the actual roles of women in conflict resolution has been minimal despite historical evidence of success in regards to the inclusion of women. It is important that the rights of women during violent conflict is incorporated into the conflict resolution process through addressing the discrimination they face, violence they endure, the basic needs they are often denied, and the beneficial role they can play in peace talks.

Topic B: Combating the Present Forms of Xenophobia in Europe

Nationalism across Europe is increasingly reflected in political and economic policies and views primarily due to globalization and increased migration. This nationalism has prompted an increase in xenophobia and has ultimately developed a largely non-inclusive and discriminatory European atmosphere. The term xenophobia refers to a ‘fear of foreigners,” but in its contemporary setting is much more nuanced and multi-faceted through distinct actions. Such actions include racial discrimination, legal and political restrictions, as well as social outcasting and can be directed against members of a different ethnicity, religion, gender identity, or other mark of distinction. This has been a large concern for European states, as these acts are manifested in political and social barriers as well as daily interactions. One of the fundamental issues present in xenophobia is a violation of human rights, considering that such unfounded hatred goes against the internationally promoted belief that all individuals have the right to effective protection. An increase in globalization and access to other countries, whether it be through an increase in migrant workers, refugees, or asylum seekers, has yielded more opportunities for migration to occur, meaning that Europe will need to alter its policies and view of foreigners to account for this inevitable growth.

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