NEW YORK — Hillary Rodham Clinton on Friday urged the United Nations to come up with a more robust strategy to combat the growing use of kidnappings of girls and women as a war tactic across the globe.
Speaking at a conference in New York, the former secretary of state and potential 2016 presidential contender said she was deeply concerned about the threat posed to women by terrorist group like Boko Haram and the Islamic State militants occupying parts of Iraq and Syria.
"I'm afraid that there is, unfortunately, a bit of a trend moving in that direction of terrorist groups to do that, especially as they're recruiting foreign fighters from elsewhere," she said during a brief Q&A session at the Roosevelt Institute's Women and Girls Rising conference.
Clinton, who had been talking about her work on women's issues, called for "a much more vigorous response, probably from the U.N." She acknowledged that the U.N. had passed a number of resolutions, including one addressing violence against women and girls in conflict, but said more needed to be done.
"I think we need the U.N. to come up with a unified strategy, out of the Security Council, and to try to provide technical and human resources to immediately be deployed to try to prevent this and to try to track down those who have kidnapped these girls," she said. "I think we need a process put in place very quickly that we can point to and rely on as we go forward."
Clinton also bemoaned the fact that some governments have not treated the kidnappings as seriously as she hoped. And said she expected the tactic to be "a big issue for the next couple of years, at least."
"It's going to be a hard struggle with the metastization of terrorists groups across Africa, North Africa particularly, into the Middle East, the continuing presence of the Taliban and the Haqqani and other groups in Afghanistan and Pakistan," she said, "for us to figure out how best to deal with their threats in general and then in particular their special attention to turning the clock back for women and girls."