Twelve months ago, on August 15th, the Taliban declared that it had taken control of Afghanistan, two decades after the US-led invasion. Peace Direct published a statement at the time, in solidarity, and expressing our concern for women and youth peacebuilders at risk of reprisal.
Soon after, we co-launched the Afghanistan Solidarity Fund with our national partner. Our goal has been to directly, quickly and safely support women-led civil society and peacebuilding organisations, to respond to the growing crisis.
Since we launched the fund, our national partner in Afghanistan has successfully dispersed funds to 25 local groups, allowing them to continue supporting their communities.
Alongside the ongoing humanitarian and economic emergencies, the situation facing women and girls has steadily worsened. Women and girls in Afghanistan face high levels of poverty, harsh restrictions on freedom of movement, education and employment, as well as increased violence and crack downs on campaigning. Faced with these challenges, women are continuing to display their remarkable courage and resilience, standing up for their rights and for their place in society. Civil society groups, women’s rights organisations and peacebuilders are finding ways to continue their incredible work with limited external support.
As one local contact told us:
“Afghan women are strong and […] have demonstrated to gain their place. My advice to Afghan women is never to give up and argue for their rights”.
Peace Direct continues to stand in solidarity as women, girls and youth in Afghanistan face an appalling humanitarian and human rights situation and ever tougher rules and restrictions.
We call on governments, lawmakers and international organisations in the Global North, to talk with, listen to and to directly fund women and youth organisations in Afghanistan. We call on them to support however they can and to raise the profile of women’s rights in all of their advocacy and diplomacy.
We call on our supporters to share this statement and not to forget the situation facing women and girls in Afghanistan.
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