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Afghan women asking for strengthening role in peace talks

By: Shukrya Kohistani

A number of Afghan women by asking for strengthening women role in intra-Afghan talks say role of women should not be ignored in talks with the Taliban group.
Civil society activists, women journalists networks, women employees in government institutions, women traders and women members in chamber of commerce and industry and women labor having active role in society are asking for presence of their representatives in intra-Afghan talks which will be soon held in Doha, the capital of Qatar. Meanwhile, on the threshold of starting the intra-Afghan talks in Qatar, a number of women in a gathering in Farah have asked for strengthening of women role in the peace talks with the Taliban group.
“I’ve lost three members of my family in ongoing war and like me other women have also lost members of their families; therefore, women should have considerable role in peace talks,” said Humaira, a victim of war in Farah.
She added that women could play vital role in peace process; therefore, Afghan women’s role should not be ignored in talks with Taliban, stressing that women should be given active part in ongoing peace efforts as women are the main victims of ongoing war in the country.
Mahtab, another woman from Farah, by expressing concern over losing achievements of the past two decades say human rights and women rights should be protected in peace talks with Taliban.
“Unfortunately the number of women participating in talks with Taliban is not considerable and it’s Taliban asking that women should not be part of negotiating team,” Mahtab said, adding that there is concern that Taliban won’t let women for any activity in society; therefore, women should now have active part in peace talks.
Farzana, another woman from Farah, is stressing on increasing of women’s presence in peace talks. “Women are the main victim of the ongoing war in the country; therefore, women should be given active part in peace process as they have problems with the Taliban and their problems and demands should be discussed in talks with the Taliban,” Farzana said.
Head of women affairs for Farah Kubra Azimi says women have played considerable role in all social and political fields in the country. She stressed on role of women in peace talks as women is half part of society and their achievements should be protected in talks with Taliban.
“Let’s call women as peace messengers as they are kind and have never participated in war; therefore, they can be the messengers of peace in the country,” Azimi said, hoping that presence of Afghan women should increase and double in talks with Taliban.
This comes amid of increasing effort for starting of intra-Afghan talks between Afghanistan government and Taliban in Qatar and there are only eight women representing Afghan women in talks with the group.
Concerns have increased over activity of Afghan women post peace agreement with the Taliban group. Afghan women want their achievements obtained during the past two decades to be protected in talks with the Taliban. They hope the international community and Afghanistan government can increase presence of Afghan women in peace process.

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