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Rio+20 Agreement Fails Women, and the World

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Written by Zonibel Woods for RH Reality Check. This diary is cross-posted; commenters wishing to engage directly with the author should do so at the original post.

See all our coverage of Rio+20 here.

Brazil, a country that in the past has championed women’s human rights, including reproductive rights, at the global level, has failed women in both Brazil and the world over.

During meetings to finalize the Rio+20 document, Heads of State will adopt in the next few days at Rio+20, delegates agreed on a plan short on vision and big on compromises. After three days of long, drawn-out negotiations, marked with lack of clarity about the process, a document to be signed off by heads of government was presented. Quickly gaveled through by the Brazilian chair, one after another government thanked Brazil for facilitating this document and largely expressed how this was the best they could do. By all accounts, despite the attempts to spin the outcome as a success, this document is neither “the future we want” nor what future generations deserve. In an effort to get consensus at whatever cost, Brazil forgot Rio: the vision and commitments of the Rio Earth Summit held 20 years ago.

From the start of the negotiations, gender equality and women’s human rights, including reproductive rights, have continuously been challenged by a few governments, claiming that [these] had “nothing to do with sustainable development."

This debate continued until the last few hours of the negotiations.

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