The United Nations Violates Its Human Rights Principles in Dealing with the Taliban

By: Tamanna Arif

The formation of the United Nations was aimed at defending and protecting the fundamental rights of human beings. Since its establishment, this organization has published many resolutions on human rights and status, making an opportunity for everyone to be aware of their dignity and fundamental rights and protect them. This prestigious and comprehensive international institution is obliged to look at and treat all of its 192 members equally. However, to date, there have been many cases and evidence of the wrongful functioning of this organization, which shows that it has bypassed and violated the principles and regulations.

Despite the fact that the United Nations is not an executive body nor is obliged to intervene directly, but acts as a coordinating and mediating body, since late, it has not acted responsibly in the most serious cases, as stated by the standards of the organization.

Since their return to power, the Taliban have taken many practical and repressive measures such as violating human rights, denying individual freedoms, denying women’s right to work and education, and dozens of other cases, which are clearly the responsibility of all human rights institutions, including the United Nations. On the other hand, it can be seen that the United Nations, by bypassing all its decrees and resolutions, has been silent against the Taliban regime, paying a ransom for the Taliban’s arrogance.

Without resorting to any other coordinating measures against the strictest positions of the Taliban regime, the officials of the UN have sufficed with a tweet and a brief expression of concern or a piece of meaningless advice to a group that cares for no one.

The engagement of the United Nations with the Taliban regime is the foundation of inconsistent behavior and opposition to the standards and ideals of this organization, which has increasingly deviated from its ideals in the face of the Taliban regime. Below are some of its actions.

United Nations Strategy of One Step Forward and Two Steps Back

There is a tendency in the behavior of the United Nations in dealing with the situation in Afghanistan under the control of the Taliban, which can be identified as a strategy of one step forward and two steps back. The organization which in 2001 designated the Taliban group as terrorist and to be eliminated, now its deputy is talking about the feasibility of recognizing the rule of this group. From 2001 to now and during the rule of the group for the last two years, the UN officials have not taken a clear, strict, and step-by-step position. This comes when the Taliban have become stricter with each passing day and have issued sweeping orders to limit and control society.

For example, in a recent case, the Taliban imposed a ban on the work of female employees related to the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA). The United Nations has warned that it would end its assistance mission in Afghanistan if the ban on female employees of the organization was not lifted. The Taliban vetoed the position of the United Nations and in response, the organization not only did not terminate its mission in Afghanistan but accepted the position and desire of the Taliban regarding confining women at home. UNAMA’s female employees were perhaps the only group of working women in the community, but now due to the agreement of the United Nations with the Taliban, those working women have also been subjected to confinement under the roof of their houses. What the United Nations is doing against the Taliban’s positions is not only an effective step forward but also two steps back, which consequently emboldens the Taliban to be stricter.

Gender-Based Apartheid; Covering up the Taliban Crime

The UN panel of experts lately described the Taliban’s actions as “gender-based apartheid”. This description covers up and minimizes the widespread crimes of the Taliban group and is a considerable discount. It is evident that the Taliban have resorted to all forms of anti-human crimes against the Afghan people, one of which is the crime of “gender-based apartheid,” but not all. Forced displacement, physical and mental torture, seizure of people’s lands and properties, multiple and back-breaking extortions from street vendors to shopkeepers and all businessmen, and harboring terrorist groups are a combination of the nature of the Taliban regime, which the United Nations described as an “apartheid” system. Clumsy actions and positions ultimately remove the opportunity for a clear and comprehensive definition of the nature of the ruling regime in Afghanistan.

The passing of time will reveal what other consequences will be seen with the sympathy and harmony of the United Nations and the Taliban. However, what is explicit to everyone right now is that the United Nations, contrary to its mission and the spirit of its formation, has presented the Afghan people as a gift to the Taliban in secret collaboration. It is not unlikely that in the immediate future, the United States will give the Taliban a seat in the United Nations or legitimize their regime.

What remains are poverty and deprivation of literacy, knowledge, freedom, and other human rights, which are in animosity with the Taliban nature, while the United Nations is the Taliban’s comforter and arrester. It is Afghans’ responsibility to free themselves from the heavy responsibility and restore their place in today’s world; the Afghans, whom the world looks at like gambling chips on the table.