Richard Bennett, the UN’s special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, condemned the “use of excessive force” to quell women’s protests, calling it a breach of their right to freedom of expression.

In response to the Taliban forces’ suppression of women’s protest on Saturday, August 13, UN official, Bennett, tweeted that the Taliban’s excessive use of force and mistreatment against women’s “peaceful” demonstration in Kabul is a breach of their right to freedom of assembly and association.

He publicly condemned the Taliban’s actions and stated that they had disrupted peaceful assembly by firing rifle bullets, inducing “intimidation, harassment,” and other methods.

The Taliban reportedly arrested some journalists and protesting women while suppressing the women’s march in Kabul that shouted the slogans “bread, work, and freedom.”

In a previous appeal to the international community, UN experts cautioned that Afghanistan’s future is “bleak” if more is not done to improve the deteriorating human rights situation, particularly for women and girls.

According to the UN experts, there have been stringent restrictions on access to information, which has hampered journalistic freedom. In order to avoid being recognized, journalists, civil rights activists, and human rights activists have either left the country or stopped all of their activities.


  • Saqalain Eqbal is an Online Editor for Khaama Press. He is a Law graduate from The American University of Afghanistan (AUAF).