Taliban pledges to defend Afghan women’s rights under Islamic law

Kabul, Mar 8 (EFE).- The Taliban underlined Tuesday their commitment to defend Afghan women’s rights under Islamic law amid protests decrying their worsening situation in the Asian country since the Islamists seized power last year.

“The Islamic Emirate (as the Taliban call themselves) is committed to upholding the Sharia (Islamic law) rights of all Afghan women,” tweeted Taliban government spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahid.

He added that International Women’s Day was “a great opportunity for our Afghan women to demand their legitimate rights,” which they would “protect and defend.”

The spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Abdul Qahar Balkhi, also emphasized the difficulties women face during the wars and was committed to “providing them with facilities for an honorable and beneficial life” under the values of Islam.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Abdul Qahar Balkhi emphasized the difficulties faced by women during the wars that Afghanistan has endured for decades and vowed to provide them with “facilities for an honorable life” under Islam and Afghan tradition.

However, the Afghan Independent Journalists Association held an event in Kabul, attended by women activists and reporters, expressing concern over their declining role in public life and worsening rights situation since the fundamentalists took power in August.

“We have taken a risk and celebrated International Women’s Day as in the current situation a huge number of female social activists and journalists have left the country and the remaining are limited to their houses with concerns regarding their future,” Huma Hakak, a participant at the event, told EFE.

Hakak said that working women in Afghanistan “face tough situations and a huge risk by still working and fighting for their rights.”

She further hoped that they would soon turn back the clock to when they had “rights to participate in political, social and economic life,” something they worked very hard to achieve in the last two decades following the American invasion in 2001 that had overthrown the Taliban.

The Afghanistan Journalist Safety Committee in turn issued a statement calling for the basic rights of women and permitting professionals to return to work especially in the regions where they are not yet allowed to practice their profession.

The rights watchdog Amnesty International, on its part, said in a statement that women and girls in Afghanistan face serious challenges to their fundamental rights, especially in education and work.

It further said that the Taliban were only making excuses to repress women by terming their demands as western agenda. EFE


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