Scott Levi Two Afghan women dressed in bright blue burqas. Today the burqa stands as a symbol of the status of women in Afghanistan, but for much of the twentieth century the history of women in this war-torn country led also toward greater rights and public presence.
In the last three decades, the country has been occupied by communist Soviet troops and US-led international forces, and in the years in between has been ruled by militant groups and the infamous oppressive Islamic Taliban.
Now Horia works at Amnesty as our Afghanistan Researcher. My aunt went to university in Kabul. Afghan women were first eligible to vote in - only a year after women in the UK were given voting rights, and a year before the women in the United States were allowed to vote.
In the s purdah gendered separation was abolished; in the s a new constitution brought equality to many areas of life, including political participation. Taliban rule in the s Who are the Taliban? The Taliban are now notorious for their human rights abuses. The group emerged in after years of conflict.
They came together with the aim of making Afghanistan an Islamic state.
The Taliban ruled in Afghanistan from until The Taliban enforced their version of Islamic Sharia law. Women and girls were: Banned from going to school or studying Banned from working Banned from leaving the house without a male chaperone Banned from showing their skin in public Banned from accessing healthcare delivered by men with women forbidden from working, healthcare was virtually inaccessible Banned from being involved in politics or speaking publicly.
There were many other ways their rights were denied to them. Women were essentially invisible in public life, imprisoned in their home. In Kabul, residents were ordered to cover their ground and first-floor windows so women inside could not be seen from the street.
If a woman left the house, it was in a full body veil burqaaccompanied by a male relative: If she disobeyed these discriminatory laws, punishments were harsh.
|On Twitter||Culture of Afghanistan Afghanistan's population is roughly 34 million. They live as housewives for the remainder of their life.|
A woman could be flogged for showing an inch or two of skin under her full-body burqa, beaten for attempting to study, stoned to death if she was found guilty of adultery. Rape and violence against women and girls was rife.
Afghan women were brutalised in the law and in nearly every aspect of their daily life. A woman in Kabul had the end of her thumb cut off for wearing nail varnish, for example, in They came to our house and told him they had orders to kill him because he allowed me to go to school.
The Mujahideen had already stopped me from going to school, but that was not enough. I cannot describe what they did to me after killing my father We will not walk away, as the outside world has done so many times before.
In the years following international intervention, many schools opened their doors to girls and women went back to work. There was progress towards equality: Now, women are still routinely discriminated against, abused and persecuted. There is lots to be done before the equality of political rhetoric becomes an everyday reality for women in Afghanistan.Jun 27, · A new Constitution and the work of a community of women’s advocates are creating a more egalitarian notion of women’s rights in Afghanistan.
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Watch video · Sima Samar, women's rights activist and chairperson of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission Under the Taliban women were banned from going to school and working. Two Afghan women dressed in bright blue burqas.
Today the burqa stands as a symbol of the status of women in Afghanistan, but for much of the twentieth century the history of women in this war-torn country led also toward greater rights and public presence. In late , the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) investigated 5, cases, noting that most cases of violence against women go unreported.
Think of women in Afghanistan now, and you'll probably recall pictures in the media of women in full-body burqas, perhaps the famous National Geographic photograph of 'the Afghan girl', or prominent figures murdered for visibly defending women's rights.
But it hasn't always been this way. Our Afghanistan Researcher, Horia, blogs on Sushmita's death, and what it tells us about the state of women's rights.
Policy Giving women a vote and a voice in Afghanistan’s future.