Iceland’s Foreign Minister Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson announced during a speech before the United Nations in New York yesterday that Iceland and Suriname, South America, will convene a “Barbershop” conference in January 2015 where men will discuss gender equality with other men, with a special focus on addressing violence against women, npr.org reports.
The conference as it will be the first time at the United Nations that we bring together only male leaders to discuss gender equality.
Gunnar Bragi made the announcement in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the 1995 U.N. women’s conference in which world leaders declared, “women’s rights are human rights.”
Iceland and Suriname fall at nearly opposite ends of global rankings on women’s rights. The Global Gender Gap Report 2013 compiled by the World Economic Forum ranked Iceland top in gender equality in economic, health and other matters. At the other end of the scale was Suriname, ranked 110th.