Chinese President Co-Hosts U.N. Meeting On Gender Equality Amid Criticisms About Treatment Of Women

News outlets report on a U.N. summit on gender equality, titled Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: A Commitment to Action, that took place on Sunday.

Associated Press: Leaders pledge money, clout to achieve women’s equality
“…Leaders from about 80 countries and dozens of diplomats attended the meeting to mark the 20th anniversary of the U.N. women’s conference in Beijing and press for implementation of its 150-page action plan for gender equality — which remains one of the 17 new development goals adopted by world leaders on Friday…” (Lederer, 9/27).

Newsweek: World Leaders Address Women’s Rights, Empowerment at U.N., but Key Countries Absent
“World leaders packed a meeting at the United Nations on Sunday morning to reaffirm their commitment to improving gender equality domestically and internationally, although several key players were absent. The gathering was co-sponsored by China and U.N. Women, the U.N. agency dedicated to women’s rights and empowerment…” (Westcott, 9/27).

New York Times: U.N. Summit Meeting on Women’s Rights Highlights More Tension Between U.S. and China
“…On Sunday, President Xi Jinping of China [hosted], along with the United Nations, a summit meeting to recognize the 20th anniversary of a landmark women’s rights conference in Beijing — never mind, as critics point out, that China imprisoned five prominent feminist activists this year…” (Sengupta, 9/26).

New York Times: Xi Jinping Vows to ‘Reaffirm’ China’s Commitment to Women’s Rights
“President Xi Jinping of China, under pressure over the jailing of women’s rights activists, promised on Sunday to ‘reaffirm our commitment to gender equality and women’s development,’ as Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon of the United Nations gently reminded world leaders to protect ‘human rights defenders’…” (Sengupta, 9/27).

Reuters: China’s Xi touts women’s rights at United Nations, U.S. critical
“… ‘If you want to empower women, don’t imprison them on the basis of their views or beliefs,’ U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power — a member of President Barack Obama’s cabinet — said in a statement…” (Martina/Nichols, 9/28).

U.N. News Centre: Global Goals cannot be achieved without ensuring gender equality and women’s empowerment — U.N. chief
“As world leaders continued their Summit on the Sustainable Development Goals, U.N. Women and China co-hosted a landmark event [Sunday] on gender equality and women’s empowerment at which Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon declared that the new Global Goals could not be achieved ‘without full and equal rights for half of the world’s population, in law and in practice’…” (9/27).

USA TODAY: China’s Xi Jinping says empowering women is vital; critics note poor treatment
“… ‘We should foster a global environment favorable for women’s development,’ Xi said through a translator at the start of the meeting. He added that China would also initiate 100 health-oriented projects in the next five years, help create schools, and host 30,000 women from developing countries in China-based training programs…” (Jones, 9/27).

The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.

KFF Headquarters: 185 Berry St., Suite 2000, San Francisco, CA 94107 | Phone 650-854-9400
Washington Offices and Barbara Jordan Conference Center: 1330 G Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005 | Phone 202-347-5270 | Email Alerts: | |

The independent source for health policy research, polling, and news, KFF is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.