The Governments of the United States and Norway today held the third bilateral Global Issues Dialogue (GID), a forum through which the United States and Norway coordinate and expand cooperation on issues of mutual interest in the promotion of human rights, civilian security, and democracy. This year’s GID focused on efforts concerning vulnerable populations; cooperation through UN mechanisms; and women, peace, and security. Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights Maria Otero and Norway’s State Secretary Gry Larsen led the Dialogue meetings on June 21 in Washington, D.C.
Norway and the United States are committed to enabling countries around the world to build more democratic, secure, stable, and just societies. Today, we held discussions in pursuit of this goal and achieved advancements through the coordination of our efforts. We discussed the implementation of our National Action Plans on Women, Peace, and Security, including best practices to advance the role of women throughout the world. We shared information on efforts in support of UN peacekeeping missions and committed to working together to train third-country police peacekeepers in order to combat sexual and gender based violence (SGBV) and other conflict-area related abuse.
We discussed the work of the 20th session of the UN’s Human Rights Council, as well as priorities for the autumn sessions of the HRC and UN General Assembly 3rd Committee. We exchanged information on our governments’ efforts to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals. In doing so, we committed to deepening coordination of assistance to LGBT organizations and individuals. In this vein, the U.S. Government welcomed the announcement by the Government of Norway that it will provide financial support to the Secretary’s Global Equality Fund, which aims to support the work of civil society organizations working on LGBT issues around the world. We renewed our mutual dedication to promoting the rights of workers and decent work around the world while discussing collaboration on the Just Jobs Network.
We reaffirmed our commitment to preventing mass atrocities and genocide, and discussed the U.S. Government’s Atrocities Prevention Board, a new mechanisms for the U.S. Government to identify and address atrocity threats. Similarly, we discussed the mission and objectives of the Department of State’s new Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations, as well as Norwegian mechanisms to address crisis, conflict, and instability.
The Dialogue concluded with a discussion of recent ongoing challenges faced by its vulnerable populations and the efforts by our governments regarding political developments in Burma.