Afghanistan | Outcry to denounce restrictions on women’s freedom

(Wangels) The foreign ministers of the G7 countries on Thursday condemned the increasingly severe restrictions imposed by the Taliban on the freedom of Afghan women, the subject of a closed meeting the same day in New York of the Council of UN security.

Posted at 4:52 p.m.

“We condemn the introduction of increasingly restrictive measures, which greatly reduce the ability of half of the population to participate in society” in a free manner and with equal rights, said in a statement the ministers meeting this week in Germany.

The Taliban isolate themselves “Thus a little more from the international community”, judged the ministers of the G7 – Germany, France, Italy, Canada, United States, Japan and United Kingdom -, calling on the fundamentalists to raise “in a way urgent” restrictions on girls and women.

These countries refer, among other things, to a decree promulgated last week requiring women to wear the full veil in public. At the end of March, the Taliban had also closed access to high schools and colleges for girls, just hours after their long-announced reopening.

Taliban authorities in the western Afghan city of Herat have also banned men and women from eating together in restaurants, including if they are married, sources said on Thursday. official.

For the European Union’s special envoy to Afghanistan, Tomas Niklasson, the Taliban’s decision to exclude girls from secondary schools in Afghanistan has “raised doubts” about their determination to keep their promises and remains a major obstacle to their international recognition. This about-face has “raised doubts […] on the credibility of their promises and on their reliability as a partner,” he said on Thursday.

In New York, the UN Security Council held a closed meeting at Norway’s initiative which could be followed in the coming days by a unanimous statement condemning the restrictions on women.

At the end of March, the Council had unanimously adopted a first communiqué expressing “its deep concern” about the deprivation of school for adolescent girls and reaffirming “the right to education for all Afghans, including girls”.

“Naïve” approach of the UN

Following the meeting, UK Ambassador Barbara Woodward slammed the Taliban’s desire to get women out of “public life”.

“It’s repressive, it’s wrong” and “it underscores the Taliban’s inability to pull Afghanistan out of its current economic, social and humanitarian crisis,” she told media.

Prior to the session, three non-permanent members of the Security Council had also strongly criticized the restrictions imposed by the Taliban.

“The policies of the Taliban continue to focus on the oppression of women and girls rather than on the economic crisis”, denounced the Norwegian deputy ambassador, Trine Heimerback.

The latest restrictions imposed on women are “utterly deplorable”, added the Irish ambassador to the UN, Geraldine Byrne Nason. “It is now perfectly clear that the Taliban have no intention of honoring their commitments to the international community,” she added.

“The rights of women and girls must be at the center of our collective commitment,” said Deputy Ambassador of Mexico Alicia Guadalupe Buenrostro Massieu.

In mid-March, the UN Security Council approved a resolution renewing the Organization’s political mission in Afghanistan for one year, relying on a more moderate approach by the Taliban, who came to power in mid-August, compared to their previous exercise of power, between 1996 and 2001.

According to an ambassador speaking on condition of anonymity, the UN secretariat’s approach to the Taliban has been “a bit naive”.

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