February 26. 2024. 6:45

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Germany unveils ‘feminist foreign policy’ concept


Germany will make humanitarian, and development aid more targeted towards the needs of minorities and women, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said on Wednesday.

Baerbock (Greens) and her colleague, Economic Cooperation And Development Minister Svenja Schulze (SPD/S&D), unveiled a concept to detail what they call “feminist foreign policy”.

“I have to admit that in this process I have always wondered what a trigger word this little word ‘feminist’ is,” Baerbock said.

“Yet what we are striving for with these guidelines is something that should actually be self-evident in the 21st century – namely that all people have the same rights, freedoms and opportunities, regardless of gender, regardless of religion, regardless of who their parents are, what they look like or who they love,” she added.

To achieve this, humanitarian and development should be more targeted towards the needs of particularly affected or vulnerable groups. Thereby, the ministries will focus on “rights, resources, and representation,” said Baerbock.

The concept would also include critical self-reflection, Baerbock said, noting that, for instance delegations travelling to negotiations with other countries should reflect different societal groups and that Germany, too, still had “a special need here about different origins”.

Initially, Sweden was considered the pioneer of feminist foreign policy, but its new centre-right government, reliant on support from the far-right, declared to end feminist foreign policy as it took over power in October 2022.

“That label has not served a good purpose. It has obscured the fact that Swedish foreign policy must be based on what Swedish interests and Swedish values are,” Foreign Affairs Minister Tobias Billström (M/EPP) said in an interview after his appointment.

(Jonathan Packroff | EURACTIV.de)