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IEA says it’s committed to addressing women’s issues

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(Last Updated On: March 8, 2022)

Marking International Women’s Day, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) said Tuesday it is committed to addressing the plight of women in the country.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement on the occasion of women’s day, March 8, and said that Afghan women had suffered the most during the years of war in the country.

“The long war in Afghanistan has taken a heavy toll on women. The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan is committed to addressing the problems of Afghan women,” the ministry said in a statement.

Following its takeover of Kabul in August, the Islamic Emirate pledged to respect the rights of women and girls in accordance with Islamic law, and announced a “general amnesty” for all former government employees.

But human rights defenders fear that women and girls may be barred from work and education, as during the previous rule of the Islamic Emirate.

Coinciding with International Women’s Day, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and Amnesty International both expressed concern about the plight of women in Afghanistan.

UNAMA said in a statement on Tuesday that the United Nations stands with Afghan women and girls facing the consequences of a series of crises with “severe gender inequality and discrimination”.

According to UNAMA, in addition to the drought and crumbling economy that has plunged millions of Afghans into debt and poverty, women have been severely affected by recent violence and conflict.

“What we are witnessing today in Afghanistan is a catastrophic crisis. Everyone in the country is affected by the current crisis, but the situation of women and girls is worrying because their rights and access to opportunities are increasingly being challenged,” said Deborah Lyons, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Afghanistan and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan.

UNAMA says the full and equal participation of Afghan women and girls in all areas of Afghanistan is vital to the country’s future, and that depriving women of their rights to freedom of movement, sightseeing, work, participation in social life, and education will cause great economic problems in the country.

“In our conversations with Afghan women, they talked about the importance of girls’ education and the need for further opportunities for higher education and employment. To promote equal opportunities for women and girls in all areas of their lives,” Lyons said. “More needs to be done.”

The United Nations added that Afghan women and girls should be given the opportunity to play an active role in building Afghanistan’s future. According to UNAMA, the United Nations is committed to protecting and promoting the rights of women and girls in Afghanistan.

According to the organization, no lasting peace and stability in a country will be sustainable without the active participation of women and their participation in life, social, economic and political.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, Amnesty International said that Afghan women and girls could no longer enjoy their full human rights.

The organization added that the Islamic Emirate has severely restricted women’s freedom of expression and movement and weakened girls’ access to education and employment in the country through policies.

The organization called on the international community to urgently support Afghan women and girls and to press the Islamic Emirate to end its oppression of women in the country.

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Our Afghan policy has failed: Pakistani senator

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(Last Updated On: February 2, 2023)

Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed on Tuesday said “our Afghan Policy has failed”, local media outlet ARY News reported.

Addressing the Senate earlier this week, Mushaid Hussain said that “failing to formulate the counter-terrorism policy is our incapacity”.

“We are in the state of war since last 43 years,” he said. “Five-billion-dollar Afghan Jihad fought, the consequences are before us,” he said.

“The battle for power will devastate Pakistan. People want a solution of the problems, an incompetence will not be allowed”, he said.

Former Senate chairman Raza Rabbani had earlier said that a joint session of Parliament scheduled for February 8 should include a discussion on the country’s national anti-terrorism policy.

“Terrorism has been on the rise, while the political parties are busy in the political tug of war,” he lamented. “All political parties should sit in the parliament to hold a national dialogue,” he advised.

Islamabad has increasingly been pointing fingers at Afghanistan accusing the Islamic Emirate of providing sanctuary to the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militant group which has carried out number attacks against Pakistan in the past few months.

The IEA has however continued to deny reports that TTP is being given a safe haven in the country, and has repeatedly told its neighor that militant groups will not be allowed to pose a threat to any country from within Afghanistan.

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US imposes new visa restrictions on some IEA members

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(Last Updated On: February 2, 2023)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Wednesday Washington has imposed additional additional visa restrictions on some Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) members in response to bans on women’s rights.

“I am taking action today to impose additional visa restrictions on certain current or former Taliban (IEA) members, members of non-state security groups, and other individuals believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, repressing women and girls in Afghanistan through restrictive policies and violence, including the Taliban’s decision to ban women from universities and from working with NGOs,” Blinken said in a statement.

 “The immediate family members of such persons may also be subject to these visa restrictions,” he said.

Blinken said the IEA has again shown disregard for the welfare of Afghan people through their decisions.

“So far, the Taliban’s actions have forced over one million school-aged Afghan girls and young women out of the classroom, with more women out of universities and countless Afghan women out of the workforce,” he said.

“These numbers will only grow as time goes on, worsening the country’s already dire economic and humanitarian crises.”

Blinken stated the IEA cannot expect the respect and support of the international community until they respect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all Afghans, including women and girls.

“We condemn in the strongest of terms the Taliban’s actions. The United States stands with the Afghan people and remains committed to doing all we can to promote and advance respect for the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all Afghans, including women and girls,” he added.

Responding to the new visa restrictions, the IEA said increasing travel restrictions on Islamic Emirate officials is not “a correct policy and will not help to solve the problems because Afghanistan will become more isolated with the restrictions”.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has condemned Washington’s decision to impose additional visa restrictions on Islamic Emirate officials, and said controversial issues should be resolved diplomatically and by positive steps.

The MoF stated that bilateral relations have shown that pressure cannot help resolve issues.

Meanwhile some experts say that the Islamic Emirate should adopt a policy that solves internal problems and one whereby the international community can interact positively with them.

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IEA defense minister meets with former generals

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(Last Updated On: February 2, 2023)

Defense Minister of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) Mawluvi Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid has met with former senior military officers and assured them that their problems will be resolved and their security will be ensured.

According to a statement issued by the defense ministry on Wednesday, the defense minister and Chief of Army Staff, Qari Fasihuddin Fitrat, met with generals of the former government and several other ex-military officials.

“The whole goal now is peace, security and defense of territorial integrity, and we have to preserve this Islamic system at any cost,” Mujahid told the generals.

The former military personnel included lieutenant general Afzal Aman, lieutenant general Mohammad Zaman Ahmadzai, major general Shaor Gul, major general Nabiullah, brigadier general Farid, colonel Afandi and several other generals and former corps commanders, read the statement.

At the meeting Mujahid said that their only aim is to restore peace in the country and heal the past wounds. He said that bringing an end to prejudice needed sincerity and love.

The minister listened to the problems and recommendations of the former military officers and promised them their issues would be resolved. He also assured them of their security.

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