Afghanistan

One of the most contentious issues within Islam today is the role of women in society. Conservatives endorse a narrow reading of Islamic texts to justify restrictions on women's mobility, legal rights and access to the public sphere, including health care, education and the workplace. Extremists among them use violence to impose their views. Moderate Muslims, on the other hand, find plenty within the Qur'an to support a full role and equal rights for women.

The shooting of a female Afghan politician on Monday demonstrates the fragility of the modest gains made by Afghan women after the fall of the Taleban, Amnesty International said on Thursday. Nida Khyani, a female Provincial Council member, was left in critical condition after being attacked in a drive-by shooting in Pul-e-Khumri, the provincial capital of Baghlan in northern Afghanistan. "Nida Khyani is yet another casualty of the systematic violent targeting of women in public life in Afghanistan," said Sam Zarifi, Director of Amnesty International's Asia Pacific programme.

Alors que le monde célèbre la Journée internationale de la femme, l’ambivalence, l’impunité, le manque d’application des lois et la corruption continuent à porter atteinte aux droits des femmes en Afghanistan, malgré une loi votée en juillet 2009 interdisant la violence envers les femmes, d’après des activistes des droits humains.

Afghanistan’s hard-won post-Taliban human rights achievements are being eroded due to the persistent immunity from prosecution of powerful figures, the intensifying conflict, and the adoption of laws which undermine justice and human rights, a UN official warns. Norah Niland, the outgoing representative of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Afghanistan, called on the Afghan government to repeal a controversial law which gives blanket immunity to perpetrators of mass atrocities committed over the past three decades.

As the world marks International Women’s Day, ambivalence, impunity, weak law enforcement and corruption continue to undermine women’s rights in Afghanistan, despite a July 2009 law banning violence against women, rights activists say. A recent case of the public beating of a woman for alleged elopement - also shown on private TV stations in Kabul - highlights the issue. In January domestic violence forced two young women to flee their homes in Oshaan village, Dolaina District, Ghor Province, southwestern Afghanistan.

1. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, (hereinafter referred to as the Committee), mandated to monitor the implementation of the Convention of the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women by 186 States Parties, including Afghanistan, welcomes the efforts of the Government of Afghanistan and its international allies on the new commitment to help secure a peaceful, prosperous and democratic future for Afghanistan initiated in January 28, 2010, London Conference, hosted by the Government of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland.

The Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women said Friday that “any agreement reached with the Taliban in Afghanistan should include a clear commitment to respect and protect women’s human rights.” The Committee urged the Afghan government and its international allies “to ensure that women representatives are included in the upcoming peace and development dialogues and negotiations with the Taliban,”

In the lead-up to the 28 January London Conference on Afghanistan hosted by the UK Government, Afghan women human rights defenders today released strong, specific recommendations on security, development and governance priorities for their country. These recommendations provide the only concrete input from consultation with Afghan women into the key decisions affecting the future of their country that will be set in London by international actors.

President Karzai is to outline plans to re-integrate Taliban fighters into Afghan society and government at a conference in London tomorrow. A news conference under the theme "Afghan Women Leader's Priorities for Afghanistan Stabilization and Reconstruction" is being held ahead of the main meeting.

In an unusual display of female political activism, several hundred demonstrators demand that President Hamid Karzai purge those connected to corruption, war crimes or the Taliban. Several hundred women, many holding aloft pictures of relatives killed by drug lords or Taliban militants, held a loud but nonviolent street protest today, demanding that President Hamid Karzai purge from his government anyone connected to corruption, war crimes or the Taliban. "These women are being very brave," said the protest leader, her face hidden by a burka. "To be a woman in Afghanistan and an activist can mean death. We want justice for our loved ones!
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