Picture credit : Pakhi Megna - River
Position Paper |

Making the EU foreign policy a feminist one

Practicing what we preach

The principle of gender equality is a core value of the EU, and as such, it should be integrated into all EU policies, both internal and external. For years, a gender perspective has been absent from foreign and security policymaking, hindering an effective EU response to global challenges. Phenomena like gender based violence, a persisting gender pay gap and hostile defiance of feminist values show foreign and security policy challenges can only be addressed in an effective and comprehensive manner if we put an end to sexism, sexist exploitation, and oppression. In order to break this pattern, we need:

  • Higher levels of representation and participation of women and other marginalized groups at negotiation tables, notably in high-level positions, and an overall increased possibility of shaping and contributing to foreign and security policy decisions;
  • The allocation of considerable resources towards achieving gender equality;
  • Opposition to the increasing backlash against gender equality and shrinking spaces for civil society, including attacks on women and feminist organisations, which both take a heavy toll on hard-fought advances for a just society free of oppression and patriarchal thinking.

Fulfilment of these actions would bring us closer towards achieving the objectives of a feminist foreign policy, and the full enjoyment of human rights for women, girls and other marginalized groups throughout the world.

A feminist foreign policy puts the existing balance of power, notably male-dominated patriarchal patterns, into question. It offers a multidimensional framework that allows for inclusive and non-discriminatory interactions across the entire foreign policy spectrum such as diplomacy, climate, security and trade.


European Union
Hemicycle European Parliament Strasbourg
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Germany
Press release

Responsible MEPs

Hannah Neumann
Hannah Neumann
Ernest Urtasun
Ernest Urtasun

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