The Taliban’s seizure of power in Afghanistan on 15 August 2021 has resulted in sweeping changes to the lives of all Afghans, but Afghan women and girls face particularly dire restrictions on their rights in their daily lives.
Afghan women held political offices, attended schools and universities, ran their own businesses, and were employed across sectors. Now, apart from women in a small number of sectors, most Afghan women have been told they cannot work and should stay at home until laws and procedures related to women are put in place. Girls above the age of 12 cannot go to school. Rigid gender segregation restrictions at universities have severely curtailed women pursuing higher education.
In addition to losing access to education and employment, women now face increased threats of gender-based violence, and severe restrictions on their rights to freedom of movement, freedom of assembly and expression, even including their choice of clothing.
Afghan women have achieved so much over the last 20 years despite political instability and conflict. They are now at imminent risk of losing these gains under the Taliban.
The international community has made commitments to continue supporting women’s rights in Afghanistan. It’s time they put their words into actions!
Sign the petition to urge the governments of the world to:
• Use available leverage during negotiations with the Taliban authorities to address women and girls’ rights as a non-negotiable issue.
• Engage with women human rights defenders and activists from Afghanistan to understand their realities and work with them to support women’s rights in Afghanistan.
• Allocate funds for the implementation of programmes and projects on the advancement of women’s rights in Afghanistan.