In Afghanistan, 28 million ladies and women “walled in alive” | EUROtoday

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LAugust 15, 2021 will stay a darkish day for Afghan ladies. Twenty years after the overthrow of their regime, the Taliban entered Kabul and assumed full powers in Afghanistan, establishing the rule of the mullahs. Since then, the diplomas obtained have been made out of date, Afghan ladies have been erased from public life, their rights destroyed.

The sinister record of abuses to which they’re victims is infinite: training is forbidden to ladies over twelve, feminine college students have been expelled from universities, nearly all of ladies are now not allowed to work, plunging numerous households in poverty, ladies are excluded from sports activities competitions, now not have the liberty to return and go and not using a “mahram”, a guardian, or to go to a park or every other public place. Beauty salons, the final place the place they may collect to assist one another, have been all closed. Almost each day, a brand new ban is promulgated. On March 4, 2024, the Taliban introduced that girls now not had the fitting to personal cell telephones.

What future below a totalitarian and terrorist regime which excludes ladies from society somewhat extra each week? “There is nothing left in this devastated country, the worst place in the world for women. There are 28 million of them who are walled up alive,” sadly summarizes Chékéba Hachemi, diplomat, founder and president of the Free Afghanistan affiliation.

Torture and executions

From this nation the place the inhabitants is on the verge of famine – 18 million folks don’t eat a meal a day in line with the UN – it’s inconceivable to flee. The ladies have neither passport nor monetary means. The consulates of the democracies current within the two neighboring nations, Iran and Pakistan, don’t open their doorways to them. Last November, the Pakistani authorities determined to ship again to their nation the 1.7 million Afghan refugees who have been within the nation in an irregular state of affairs, regardless of the dangers linked to the Taliban regime. Forty-nine detention facilities have been opened throughout the nation to spherical them up for deportation. 500,000 folks have already been forcibly returned, together with many ladies.

At the beginning of 2023, activists have additionally abandoned the general public sq., pockets of resilience are shrinking. The few ladies who nonetheless dare to protest are virtually systematically arrested, despatched to jail and tortured. “There is no legal or defense system,” says Chékéba Hachemi, who can also be a board member of Stand, Speak, Rise Up!, an affiliation that fights to finish rape as a weapon of struggle. . According to her, many ladies disappear in a single day on this nation the place executions are recurrently ordered.

Since the beginning of 2024, many ladies have additionally been arrested and forcibly taken away by armed police for not having revered the foundations concerning “wearing the hijab”., the Islamic veil. In May 2022, the Taliban Islamists issued a decree by means of the Ministry of Vice and Virtue, ordering ladies to solely present their eyes. They additionally really useful that they put on darkish clothes, or perhaps a burqa, which hides them fully, from head to toe, like the foundations established throughout their earlier regime, between 1996 and 2001.

“All countries knew who the Taliban were”

Access to care stays the one proper to which Afghan ladies can nonetheless kind of declare, offered they don’t seem to be handled by males. When the Taliban returned, many feminine medical doctors and nurses managed to depart the nation. Hospitals are functioning, however with out actual workers or medication. A proper which subsequently exists in apply, however not the truth is.

“Since August 15, 2021, women no longer have the right to anything, but the difference from 1996 is that all countries knew who the Taliban were and nothing was done to prevent them,” laments Chékéba Hachemi. She painfully remembers the phrases spoken by Jean-Yves Le Drian, on the time Minister of Foreign Affairs, who stated he hoped that this Taliban authorities can be “inclusive”. “How could we accept that the Taliban sit at the negotiating table in Doha? » fumes the diplomat, who recalls that Afghanistan, battered by four almost successive invasions (British, Soviet and twice Taliban), is no longer able to rise up.

“The country has been drained of its brains for forty years. Even if schools and universities have reopened for twenty years, you should know that 85% of the population is illiterate. No leader can emerge, and the risk in the event of arrest is death,” recollects Chékéba Hachemi.

“Deafening silence”

“We gave the keys to this terrorist regime, Europe in 2014 and the United States in 2020, then we looked the other way. But we must understand that what is happening there concerns us all: Afghanistan is today a laboratory of terrorism. What are we waiting for to open our eyes? A new September 11? A new Bataclan? » asks the diplomat who regrets a “deafening and global silence”. “Where is the UN Secretary General, where are the representatives of UN Women? They should go to Kabul on March 8! »

The NGO Amnesty International believes that this “campaign of persecution” towards ladies might represent against the law towards humanity. “For the few Afghan women who manage to flee to neighboring countries like Iran and Pakistan, hardship and persecution continue, with arbitrary arrests by local authorities, harassment and the risk of being sent back to Afghanistan. Visas allowing you to reach France from these countries are being issued in a trickle and the delays in obtaining an appointment at consulates are lengthening,” notes Amnesty.

On the event of International Women's Rights Day, the NGO is becoming a member of the huge “feminist strike” motion in assist of Afghan ladies in exile. “President Emmanuel Macron and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs had officially assured, from 2021, that they would not abandon Afghan women who were seeking to flee persecution by the Taliban. But most of them, who have taken refuge in Iran or Pakistan, face long delays in the issuance of visas from third countries, starting with France,” deplores Amnesty in a press launch. revealed on March 6. The NGO asks the French authorities to “keep their promises” and “accelerate” the procedures for granting visas to Afghan refugees.