By: The Kabul Times
United National in the Afghan process seeks a more leading role for women in making decisions at all levels.
United Nations in a statement on International Women’s day said urged that afghan women should be given a leading role in peace, and they will be supported from all sectors of society from government to the international community.
According to the UN statement, there are opportunities to show the strengths of Afghan women leaders in all their diversity, and when women of today will be respected and supported, more girls in the future will be encouraged to follow their path.
“The peace process has brought to the fore strong Afghan women leaders, who have negotiated on behalf of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and rallied support in their communities for a peaceful solution to the conflict,” said Deborah Lyons, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan said.
“Empowering these women and expanding women’s participation will be critical to ensure a just and sustainable peace that protects the rights of all Afghans”, She added.
“Women must be at the front and center of decision-making, to achieve a peace that lasts, for a bright future for all Afghans,” said Aleta Miller, UN Women Representative in Afghanistan.
“Time and again, Afghan women have proven that their skills, knowledge and fierce determination have pushed their country towards the peaceful and prosperous future that Afghans yearn for. Today, Afghanistan stands before an opportunity unlike any other in the country’s history. Afghanistan can build back a better, stronger country for every woman, girl, man, and boy.
To do so, women must be at the front and centre of decision-making, to achieve a peace that lasts, for a bright future for all Afghans,” said Aleta Miller, UN Women Representative in Afghanistan.
United Nations in a released statement indicated the bravery of women and specifically Afghan women who challenged the pandemic, “In Afghanistan, as in many countries around the world, women stand at the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis: as healthcare workers, caregivers, innovators, and community organizers. Today, we stand with these women and celebrate their achievements. To take just one example, a women’s rights activist from one province described her group’s work engaging with local authorities on the COVID-19 response, resulting in the opening of COVID19 testing laboratory in the province, as well as more public awareness and better support for the poorest families”, the statement read.
Meanwhile, the Friends of Afghan Women Ambassadors’ Group, a group of representatives from different countries, says that they support the gains made by women are preserved in a negotiated political settlement.
The joint statement says “we support loud and consistent calls of women for a ceasefire, and we condemn the continued targeted attacks on and threats against women human rights defenders, civil society activists, peacebuilders and journalists”.
Women in Afghanistan carry the pain of the war in their everyday life, “women from across Afghanistan reaffirmed that peace not only means the absence of war, but freedom from all forms of violence and coercion” and that peace means “respect for human dignity, justice, human rights, and equality for all”. Religious and community leaders should raise their voice for women’s fundamental rights to engage in all social spheres from education to work opportunities, protection from any form of violence anywhere.
The ambassador’s group also stated that “women play a key role in bringing diverse perspectives to the negotiating table and developing consensus”.
The group urged all warring parties to give and make more space for women in leadership and peace structures for women.
“Afghan women have bravely stepped up-often at great risk-to call for a sustainable and just peace” the statement concluded.
“Women and girls in Afghanistan have made substantial gains over the past two decades. Today, 3.5 millions of Afghan girls are in school, representing around 40% of students, while women represent roughly a third of teachers in the country and are also increasingly becoming legislators, judges, doctors, civil servants, political, business and civil society leaders”, EU delegation in Kabul stated.
“The EU is a strong champion for gender equality and we stand with the women of Afghanistan, not only today but every day. Building a peaceful, prosperous country requires the efforts of the whole population. In this country, there is so much talent and in the film we are joined by a courageous group of people from various spheres of a pluralistic Afghanistan. From an Olympic medallist to some of the most well-known singers, everyone standing up for gender equality”, said Arnout Pauwels, Deputy Head of EU Delegation and Chargés d’Affaires a.i.
Sport stars, actors, singers – raising their voices for gender equality.
This comes as US Charge d’ Affaires while marking International Women Day said that “The United States is committed to advancing gender equality, social inclusion, and the status of women and girls here in Afghanistan and globally.”