Marquita da Cunha is an army lieutenant with the Falintil–Defence Forces of Timor-Leste (F-FDTL) who recently participated in a training designed for female military officers organized by UN Women and the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) in preparation for future deployment in UN peacekeeping operations. She spoke to UN Women about her journey.
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Democracy, sustainable peace and conflict prevention cannot be achieved if women-half of the population-are left behind. This year's International Day of Democracy (15 September) theme, "Democracy and Conflict Prevention", calls for "strong leadership to support democracy, strengthen civil society, empower women and uphold the rule of law".