A Catastrophic Process Adapted by Taliban to Gradually Deny Women of Their Basic Rights

By Ilyas Asar

The women in Afghanistan have been eliminated from political, social, cultural and educational spheres through a gradual, step-by-step and well-planned process since the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan.

The Taliban utilizes deferent approaches to fulfill their target for complete elimination of Afghan women and bring them to the state as it was in 1990s. the approaches being used includes direct pressure and banning some activities directly under the name of Islam and Shariya, putting indirect pressure under the name of culture and traditional fundamentals, doing and ignoring of gestures and using the frontlines to perform the limitations while the leaders are opposing or ignoring those limitations.

At the very initial steps, Taliban banned presence of women in some of governmental organizations such as the Independent Directorate of Local Governance – IDLG and National Radio and Television of Afghanistan, abducted some of advocates and women activists in Kabul, Mazar e Sharif and other provinces, some whom were killed and some were released after tolerating server tortures and taking guarantees to stop advocacy for women rights there after significant direct gesture of Taliban against women was banning education of women and girls in medium and high schools.

Thereafter, the limited presence of unaccompanied women in non-governmental organizations and private sectors, this wasn’t announced but was declared to the organizations and companies unofficially as well as beating of women in the cities for observing hijab, which was ignored and declined by the leaders and spokesmen of the group.

Furthermore, Taliban limited the presence of women and girls in universities under the name of hijab observation, several women and girl were prevented to enter universities due wearing color scarfs while they were wearing outfits in line with the guidelines of Taliban.

In the latest decree, Taliban has forced the females in media to wear face masks while presenting TV shows and news bulletins which has sparked serious reactions on national and international spheres. The limitation had huge reflection through social media as well was condemned by the people and elites of Afghanistan, international politicians, the UN and international celebrities but the Taliban insisted on their order and forced the women on TVs to cover their faces.

Through and simple analysis of what Taliban group has done for limiting women within last nine months. It can be figure out that the group will not suffice to what are done till now and will impose more limitations on women till complete elimination of them from social, cultural and political environment of Afghanistan. The elimination is supposed to be done gradually through a process so as to avoid facing the reactions.

The reason for doing so might be connected to their strategy of gaining leverage on negation tables with international community members as well as to prevent huge movements of people who oppose the plan especially women activists inside the country.

The disgusting process is a clear violation of human rights and fundamental rights of women in Afghanistan and the only way to prevent this gender annihilation is that international community put pressure on Taliban and make the group accountable for putting this inhuman process aside, accepting and observing human rights and the fundamental right of Afghan women.

Of course, the international community especially the United Nations (UN) and the countries who are involved in Afghanistan have not taken any serious and practical action to address this issue and it is their responsibility to put more political and economic pressures on Taliban leader, measures that do not affects the people of Afghanistan but targeting only the leaders and policy makers of Taliban.

Along to that, it is time for all human rights and women rights activists inside the country and Afghan diasporas including elites, politicians, human rights defenders and civil society activists to stand together and use all the available platforms to force the UN and international community for initiating a result based and meaningful intervention for guaranteeing women’s rights including their presence in social, cultural and political sphere of Afghanistan.