The 50th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council
13 June to 8 July 2022
Statement of Association Ma’onah for Human Rights and Immigration and Geneva International Centre for Justice
Item 1: Urgent debate on human rights of women and girls in Afghanistan
1 July 2022
By Anyssa Boyer
Thank you, President.
We thank you for convening this urgent debate on the concerning human rights situation of women and girls in Afghanistan. Following the Taliban’s violent seizure of power in August 2021, Afghan women and girls’ human rights have been continuously undermined, hindering their freedoms and dignity.
Afghan women and girls have been exposed to different forms of structural violence including child trafficking, forced marriage, and sexual exploitation. While the need for adequate survivor centres continues to grow, these services have been forced to decrease their operating capacities. Remaining service providers are consistently targeted and threatened for supporting women and girls’ fundamental rights. Furthermore, on 3rd of December 2021, the de-facto Taliban Government announced a “Special Decree on Women’s Rights,” recognising women as “noble and free human beings.” The Decree affirms that women and widows should not be forced into marriage and are entitled to a share of their husband’s property. These commitments are not being met.
Ma’onah and Geneva International Centre for Justice stand with Afghan women and girls. We highly condemn the systematic human rights violations and urge the Government to enforce the Law on the Elimination of Violence Against Women, the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women, and the 2018 Security Council resolution 2405, all largely overlooked by the Afghan criminal justice system. We call on the international community to hold the de facto Taliban government accountable for its actions and immediately halt all forms of violence against women and girls.