The United Nations has called on the Taliban to repeal new rules for girls and women

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UN – The UN Security Council on Tuesday called on the Taliban regime in Afghanistan to “rapidly reverse” its policies and practices to limit the human rights of women and girls.

In a press statement approved by the 15-member council, the UN’s most powerful body expressed “deep concern” over the Taliban’s restrictions on girls’ education and women’s employment, freedom of movement and “full, equal and meaningful participation in public life.” “

“These sanctions are contrary to the expectations of the international community and the Taliban’s commitment to the Afghan people,” the council stressed.

When the Taliban first ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001, women and girls were subject to unrestricted restrictions – no education, no participation in public life, and women were required to wear the full burqa.

After the 9/11 attacks on the United States, the Taliban were overthrown by US forces, and for the next 20 years, Afghan girls were admitted to universities, not just schools, and many female doctors, lawyers, judges, MPs and business owners, traveling without covering their faces.

After the Taliban seized the capital on August 15, when US and NATO forces were in the final stages of withdrawing them from Afghanistan after 20 years, they promised more moderate Islamic rule in which women would be allowed to continue their education and work abroad. Home, and initially no dress code was announced even though they promised to impose Sharia, or Islamic law.

But in recent weeks, Taliban extremists have turned the clock back on their previous strict rules, confirming the worst fears of rights activists and further complicating the Taliban’s dealings with the already distrustful international community.

Earlier this month, the Taliban publicly instructed all women to wear clothing from head to toe that could only be seen with their eyes. The decree states that women must leave the home only if necessary and male relatives will face punishment for violating the women’s dress code, starting with a summons and increasing to a court hearing and jail time.

The Taliban leadership has banned girls from attending school after the sixth grade, reversing earlier promises by its officials that girls of all ages would be allowed to study. And this week the Taliban began enforcing an order requiring all female TV presenters in the country to cover their faces while broadcasting.

The Security Council requested that in addition to the International Atomic Energy Agency’s ongoing inspections in Iran, that it monitor Iran’s compliance with “the steps required by the IAEA Board”. It’s too late. “

The Council convened emergency closed-door consultations on May 12 at the request of Ireland and Mexico on the Taliban’s crackdown on Afghan girls and women, vice-chair of its informal expert group on women, peace and security.

They described the Taliban’s latest move as “terrifying” and said they had made it clear that Afghan rulers had no desire to “promote, respect or uphold the rights of women and girls, or to honor the multiple promises they have made to Afghan women and the international community in recent times.” Months. “

Barbara Woodward, Britain’s ambassador to the United Nations, said that before the Taliban came to power in August, 3.8 million girls were in school, a quarter of seats in parliament were held by women, and 20% of the workforce was women. He stressed after the council meeting that women should not accept “excluded lives”.

The Security Council requested that in addition to the International Atomic Energy Agency’s ongoing inspections in Afghanistan, that it monitor Iran’s compliance with “the steps required by the IAEA Board”. It called for a concerted effort to address the country’s “dire humanitarian and economic situation”.

In February, President Joe Biden signed an order releasing $ 7 billion in Afghan assets deposited in the United States, splitting the money between humanitarian aid for Afghanistan and a fund for 9/11 victims. No money was immediately released, and the order called on banks to provide $ 3.5 billion in frozen funds to a trust fund for humanitarian relief and distribution through basic humanitarian needs. The remaining $ 3.5 billion will remain in the United States.

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