Afghanistan

AWSDC is a non profit organization established in 1999 with programming focusing on the needs of Afghan women, including widows and the disabled or chronically ill, and orphan children. The goals of AWSDC are to reduce the suffering of Afghan women and children through promotion of peace and initiation of rehabilitation and development oriented projects reaching the most vulnerable populations in the remote and urban areas of Afghanistan. Currently it is functioning through a central office in Kabul, Afghanistan.

AWN is comprised of over 3000 individual members from Afghanistan and Pakistan and over 72 Afghan women non-government organizations. AWN was created in 1995 by Afghan women as they recognized the value of working collaboratively towards their common goals. The network members work in both Pakistan and Afghanistan to the benefit of all Afghan women: refugees, rural women and educated women. As a representational and capacity building body, AWN is playing a critical role in the transition and reconstruction of Afghanistan.

Afghanistan’s 30 million hectares of pasture lands represent 45 percent of the total land area and are key to livelihood and water catchment in the exceedingly dry country. This is one of the case studies in this report which addresses the tenure fate of three commons in conflict affected states (the other two are Liberia and Sudan). The report, however, does not address women’s access to this valuable resource.
This paper draws together findings from three rural field studies in Bamyan, Faryab and Badakhshan provinces. The first two were rapid appraisal studies but concurred in a main finding that pastureland tenure needs priority attention. The third focal report on pasture issues in Badakhshan built upon in-depth and longitudinal research by its author. Sec 2.2.4 (p. 26) tackles the issue of female land ownership albeit far too briefly.
This study concludes that long years of misdirected policy have entrenched deeply inequitable and often unjust land ownership relations among tribes, between agricultural and pastoral systems and among feudally arranged classes of society. Attempts to remedy these have been poorly executed.
This report was intended to serve as an input for the government’s efforts to address gender disparities. It synthesized existing information and identified critical areas in which gender-responsive actions are likely to enhance growth, poverty reduction and human well-being including in the area of property and inheritance. The report provides information on the current laws and cultural practices in relation to inheritance and property.
This article argues that social norms, more so than Islamic law, limit Afghan women’s access to economic resources and that to understand the economic future of Afghan women, one must understand the interaction of social norms and Islamic law. Sec 2 of the article analyzes the Islamic laws on inheritance, dower and marriage and determines that Islamic law grants women rights to certain types of wealth. Section 3 then examines the social norms that limit the economic rights to inheritance, dower and marriage found in Islamic Law. 

The publication presents perspectives from a number of countries including Afghanistan reflecting the idea that women’s land, property and housing rights require treatment within a broad human rights framework and that women’s status and condition, as well as their experience of violence, is intimately connected with their ability to exercise fundamental socio-economic and cultural rights. The contribution from Afghanistan in particular suggests the interconnections between women’s rights to land and property and women’s socio-economic status.

This publication provides an overview of the laws and legal system which pertains to property in Afghanistan.
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