"I strongly believe that the active participation of women in public and political life is of highest relevance for a modern and peaceful democracy," Wollfarth said. "Albanian women as an integral part of the Albanian society must be an integral part of the country's governance and democratization process."
"It is important to support female candidates and enforce the 30 percent gender quota," he stressed. One of the findings of a three-year project on enhancing women's role in the government is that women from all parts of the country want to run as candidates at the elections, and to vote. This is an important conclusion from the project administered by the OSCE Presence in Albania and co-funded by the Netherlands and Sweden, Wollfarth added.
Gender equality is an important OSCE commitment. The Helsinki Final Act highlights respect of human rights and fundamental freedoms without distinction on the basis of gender as one of the key OSCE principles. In 2004 all the participating States renewed their commitment to gender equality by stating that "equal rights of women and men and the protection of their human rights are essential to peace, sustainable democracy, economic development and therefore to security and stability in the OSCE region".