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Summary The international reconstruction effort in Afghanistan after 2001 created an opportunity to advance human rights, and women’s and girls’ rights in particular. Although its achievements have fallen short of what was envisioned, significant…
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(New York, May 6, 2021) – Falling donor support for essential services in Afghanistan is reducing women’s access to essential health care, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. More cuts are likely in coming months following the announcement…
News

Assault on Kabul Maternity Clinic Shows Cruel Disregard for Civilians

  (New York) – The attack by unidentified assailants on a hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan on May 12, 2020 shows blatant disregard for civilian life and is an apparent war crime, Human Rights Watch said today. A suicide bombing attack…
Security forces patrol as smokes rises from a maternity hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan, after gunmen attacked leading to shootout with the police and killing several people, May 12, 2020.
News
This is a moment of both fear and hope for Afghan women — and an urgent time for the world to support their hard-won rights. The Feb. 29 deal between the US and the Taliban could pave the way for a peace that Afghans desperately seek.…
Women walk along a street in the old part of Kabul February 29, 2020.
News

Failing Diplomatic Talks Show Need for a Different Path

(Geneva) – Almost three in every four people responding to a new poll in 10 European countries want their governments to work for an international treaty prohibiting lethal autonomous weapons systems, Human Rights Watch said today. At…
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News

Governments Need to Better Protect Girl Students from Attack

“There were two bombs in the school,” said 16-year-old Malalai, describing an attack in January 2016 against her girls’ school in Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province. She said the Taliban had left a letter in the schoolyard: “They said…
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News

Conflict’s Civilian Toll at Record High Levels

Many more women are being killed and injured in Afghanistan today than a year ago, according to the United Nation’s latest civilian casualty report. They are casualties of an intensifying armed conflict that is also claiming more…
An Afghan woman walks past a damaged car after a suicide attack on French restaurant "Le Jardin" in Kabul, Afghanistan January 2, 2016.
News

Participation by Women Even More Urgent in Light of Recent Attacks in Kabul

Kabul’s citizens desperately need an end to the violence. The city spent much of last week burying its dead, again and again. On May 31, a truck bomb exploded at a busy intersection, killing 150 people and wounding more than 300. On…
Foreign delegation members listen as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani delivers a speech during a peace and security cooperation conference in Kabul, Afghanistan June 6, 2017.
News
For nine years, I have watched as donors have come together every couple of years to discuss how much they are prepared to invest in Afghanistan’s future. The latest donor conference both surprised and depressed me. Aid funds are still rolling in, but the…
DATE IMPORTED:October 05, 2016(Front Row L-R) Afghanistan's Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, President Ashraf Ghani, European Council President Donald Tusk, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, U.S.
News

Urge to Press the Government for Action Is Long Gone

“This is not a side event. This is the main event,” several speakers said at the – yes – side event on women’s empowerment the day before the October 5 donor conference on Afghanistan in Brussels. The donor session, for all its warm glow, highlighted the…
DATE IMPORTED:October 05, 2016(Front Row L-R) Afghanistan's Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, President Ashraf Ghani, European Council President Donald Tusk, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, U.S.
News

Donors Need to Back Women’s Rights, Uphold UN Resolution 1325

(Kabul) – The Afghan government should act to ensure that women have a full role in any negotiations between the government and the Taliban and other insurgent groups, Human Rights Watch said today. The current pause in negotiations, due to the disclosure…
Members of the Loya Jirga, grand council, attend during the last day of the Loya Jirga, in Kabul on November 24, 2013.
News
When an Afghan government delegation met Taliban representatives for talks in Qatar this week, several unusual things happened. The first is that the 20-person Afghan government delegation included three women. The women who attended said they found the…
News
As rumors swirl about a new round of peace talks with the Afghan Taliban, the first under Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani, women are fighting for a place at the table. The view from the front lines of that fight is maddening. Ghani has made…
Report
Summary With the rapid development and proliferation of robotic weapons, machines are starting to take the place of humans on the battlefield. Some military and robotics experts have…
Report
Map of Afghanistan © 2012 Human Rights Watch Glossary of Acronyms and Terms AGO: Attorney …
Interactive
Approximately 400 women and girls are imprisoned in Afghanistan for “moral crimes”, which usually involve flight from unlawful forced marriage or domestic violence. Some women and girls have been convicted of zina, sex outside of marriage, after being…