This paper presents the proceedings of the Twenty-third Special Session of the UN General Assembly entitled "Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the 21st century". Attended by representatives from 179 countries, UN agencies and 1200 nongovernmental organizations, the governments which came together reaffirmed their commitment to the goals and objectives contained in the Beijing Declaration and the Platform for Action adopted at the 4th World Conference on Women in 1995. Participants reviewed and appraised progress and identified obstacles and current challenges in the implementation of the Platform for Action. In addition, they recognized that the goals and commitments made in the Platform for Action have not been fully implemented and achieved. In view of this, a consensus was achieved which noted that further actions and initiatives at local, national, regional, and international levels to accelerate its implementation and to ensure that commitments for gender equality, development and peace are fully realized. An outcome of this meeting is the document entitled "Further actions and initiatives to implement the Beijing Declaration and the Platform for Action". The document presents the progress made since the 4th women's Conference in Beijing in 1995.