Mexico adopted its first 1325 National Action Plan in 2021. The development of the NAP was spearheaded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of National Defense, the Ministry of the Navy, the Ministry of Security and Citizen Protection, and the National Institute for Women.
The NAP is structured along the four main pillars of the Women, Peace and Security agenda: Prevention, Participation, Protection, and Relief and Recovery. This policy aligns itself with Mexico’s Feminist Foreign Policy, adopted in January 2020.
Its main stated goal is to “mainstream a human rights and gender approach into all areas of Mexican foreign policy; to make visible the contribution of women to foreign policy and to concrete actions that have an impact on the gender foreign agenda, such as the Women, Peace and Security agenda; and to prioritize actions that have a high impact both on the global and national levels” (pg. 3). The NAP states (pg. 4) that its purpose is “to promote the substantive participation of women as real and effective actors in conflict prevention at all levels and in the efforts of the United Nations for the maintenance, reconstruction, and consolidation of peace.” It focuses primarily on women in peace operations and also on training and capacity building for different actors.
The Mexican Drug War, the national manifestation of the wider US-led War on Drugs, has persisted from the mid-2000s to the present day, with adverse impacts on human rights in the country and wider region. Violence between drug cartels existed for decades prior, but in 2006 the Mexican government began military operations against the cartels, resulting in high levels of violence. Although the exact number of deaths from the drug war is unknown, experts estimate that over 150,000 people have been killed since the war began, and thousands have disappeared. Between 2018 and 2020, over 13,000 people have been killed in relation to drug violence, many of whom were civilians.
Increased militarization resulting from the drug war has contributed to widespread human rights violations, including torture, threats, extrajudicial execution, and illegal arrest, with impunity. There have also been significant gendered impacts of militarization. Since the mid-2000s, femicides have sharply increased in Mexico, with an over 100% increase in the past four years. Additionally, women and girls in Mexico face sexual abuse, domestic violence, crackdown on feminist protest, sexual assault when taken into police custody, and austerity policies that have reduced funding for services in recent years. This violence has been significantly fueled by the widespread proliferation of weapons from the US civilian firearms and ammunition market to Mexico. Many groups have been disproportionately impacted by this violence, including migrants and people living in the northern border regions, and journalists and politicians have also been targeted. However, although the NAP aligns itself with both domestic and foreign policy, it does not reference these current events in relation to implementation of the WPS agenda, nor other relevant issues such as the border and migration.
Plan Nacional de Acción (2021)
Global Gender Gap Index 2020
25 / 153
Arms Trade Treaty Ratified
Military expenditure (2019)
$6.536 billion USD
Explore Mexico's National Action Plan
The plan was announced jointly by the The Ministry of Foreign Relations (SRE), the Ministry of National Defense (Sedena), the Ministry of the Navy (Semar), the Ministry of Security and Citizen Protection (SSPC) and the National Institute of Women (Inmujeres). The press release states that the NAP was prepared with the support of UN Women Mexico and results from the activities of the Working Group for Peace Operations (GT-OMP).
There is no mention of civil society in relation to the development of the NAP.
The implementation of the NAP is the responsibility of an Inter-Agency Group (pg. 9). This group will rely on the Working Group of Peacekeeping Operations, and will contain representatives of the Secretariats of Foreign Affairs, National Defense, Navy, Security and Citizen Protection and by the National Institute of Women (INMUJERES), as well as other relevant agencies.
The NAP states that the “active participation of international organizations, academia, civil society, and other actors...will be promoted” in the NAP implementation (pg. 5). However, civil society are not participants in the working group identified in the document, and only one objective of the NAP references meetings with civil society.
The Inter-Secretariat Working Group is responsible for monitoring and evaluation of the NAP (pg. 9).
WILPF Mexico was not listed as involved in the development of the NAP.
The structure and scope of the NAP will be reviewed after three years (pg. 5), although the NAP overall is not time-bound. However, some indicators detail activities that are meant to be completed on an annual basis or during a specific time period.
The ten strategic objectives of the NAP outline key areas of activity for implementation of the WPS agenda in Mexico. These are listed below under each of the four pillars of the WPS agenda around which the NAP is structured: Prevention, Participation, Protection, and Relief and Recovery.
Prevention: 1) Disseminate and raise awareness among military and police personnel about the role of women in conflict prevention and peace processes. 2) Promote gender mainstreaming among the institutions responsible for peacekeeping and security in Mexico, particularly at the local level. 3) Mainstream gender into peacebuilding and security processes in the national territory.
Participation: 1) Enhance the substantive participation and pre-deployment training of women in uniform in United Nations Peace Operations. 2) Ensure the substantive participation of women in uniform in Peace Operations. 3) Promote the creation of networks of women peacemakers. 4) Promote the gender perspective and the empowerment of women in multilateral efforts for international peace and security, including peace processes and mediation efforts, the prevention and combating of violent extremism that can lead to terrorism, as well as in disarmament, non-proliferation, and arms control.
Protection: 1) Incorporate the protection of the human rights of women and girls and mainstream gender in the institutions that participate in Peace Operations. 2) Continue promoting the observance of the United Nations zero tolerance policy to prevent and respond to sexual exploitation and abuse.
Relief and Recovery: 1) Support gender mainstreaming in aid and humanitarian assistance efforts, as well as in post-conflict peacebuilding.
Under each of the strategic objectives there are multiple actions, activities, and goals that are outlined in the plan (pgs. 17-25).
Under the strategic objective #3 on prevention, which is to “Mainstream gender into peacebuilding and security processes in the national territory”, there are two actions:
- Promote the training of police institutions in the prevention of violence against women and girls, in particular sexual and gender-based violence, all from a gender and intercultural perspective and
- Create police forces specialized in the prevention, investigation, and prosecution of crimes of violence against women as part of the deployment of Gender Missions: “Women, Peace, and Security.
Under this same strategic objective, there are two activities:
- Develop a program of gender-responsive and women rights-based training and/or workshops for police performance in peacebuilding and security processes.
- Train and integrate gender-responsive and intersectional police forces specialized in the prevention, investigation, and prosecution of crimes of violence against women in order to establish comprehensive actions aimed at guaranteeing the life, security, and human rights of women and girls.
The NAP contains a plan with specific activities and indicators (pgs.17-25). Under each of the strategic objectives, actions, and activities listed above, there are indicators and goals, which are linked to relevant agencies responsible for implementation.
Under the participation pillar strategic objective on promoting a gender perspective and the empowerment of women in multilateral efforts for peace and security, one indicator is: “Number of multilateral forums and meetings attended by women officials, experts or civil society representatives”.
The monitoring and evaluation of the NAP will be carried out by an Inter-Secretariat Working Group. They will plan activities, acquire information for monitoring, prepare an annual report on the NAP, follow up on progress, and review and update the NAP and its indicators. This group is also responsible for engaging with other actors including civil society and academia.
The NAP does not provide a specific number for a budget, however, the section on financing (pg. 10) states: “Each coordinating institution must carry out the activities contemplated in the NAP-1325 with its own human and financial resources; therefore, in their annual budget, it will be required to program the necessary financial resources for the corresponding activities in accordance with the objectives of the Plan.” Additionally, this section highlights the potential role of international cooperation and exchange.
Disarmament and arms control are listed as areas of focus within the purpose and structure of the NAP (page 4-5). This is largely within the context of the participation pillar.
Under the participation pillar, strategic objective 4 specifically highlights disarmament and arms control. This objective states: “Promote the gender perspective and the empowerment of women in multilateral efforts for international peace and security, including peace processes and mediation efforts, the prevention and combating of violent extremism that can lead to terrorism, as well as in disarmament, non-proliferation, and arms control.” This objective is aligned with relevant indicators and activities.