More than 70 countries, including the European Union, expressed concern about the ban on Afghan women and girls’ fundamental rights in Afghanistan, said a joint statement on Sunday.
In a joint newsletter, more than 70 countries, including the European Union, expressed concern about the restrictions on Afghan women and girls’ access to education and employment and said these restrictions undermine economic and social stability, development, inclusive governance, and the recognition of human rights.
In addition, the statement said that banning Afghan women’s work in domestic and foreign non-governmental organizations would deny millions of Afghans access to humanitarian relief.
According to the newsletter, one of the three aid workers is a woman, and as a result, they are no longer allowed to assist women and other people in need.
The Interim government in Afghanistan has not yet made any statements regarding the newsletter. However, it has often been underlined that the ban on Afghan women’s education and work is temporary.
Since August 15, 2021, the de facto authorities have barred girls from attending secondary school, restricted women and girls’ freedom of movement, excluded women from most areas of the workforce and banned women from using parks, gyms and public bath houses.
Last week during women’s day, the special envoy for Afghanistan, Roza Otunbayeva, expressed her concern about Afghan women’s access to education and work amid the humanitarian crisis.
“Amid a catastrophic humanitarian situation, in which two-thirds of Afghanistan’s population — 28 million people — need humanitarian assistance to survive, and 20 million people are experiencing crisis levels of food insecurity, necessitating funding of $4.62 billion — the single largest country appeal ever — access and security constraints, including the bans on women working in non-governmental organizations, make it difficult to reach those in desperate need.”
She also said that in light of these tragic circumstances, Afghan women feel trapped and despondent, with young girls directly discussing suicide with her. She emphasized that the Taliban’s gender-based human rights breaches constitute gender persecution, a crime against humanity, for which United Nations experts have urged the Taliban to be looked into and held accountable. “This cannot continue,” she said.
On the other hand, the organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) recently announced that a team of distinguished Islamic Scholars would be sent to Afghanistan to discuss women’s right to education and work with the Taliban authorities from Islam’s point of view.