Afghanistan: At UN Human Rights Council, ICJ calls for urgent response to safeguard the rights of women and girls facing persecution

As the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council discussed the situation of women and girls in Afghanistan, the International Commission of Jurists called today on the international community to scale up efforts to address the ongoing widespread and systematic human rights violations abuses in the country, especially the attacks on women and girls by the Taliban acting as the de facto governing authorities.

Following on from their joint report on The Taliban’s War on Women, The ICJ and Amnesty International, addressed the Human Rights Council and convened a panel discussion at the UN. The event provided additional space for women human rights defenders and UN experts to offer insights about the atrocious plight of faced by women and girls in Afghanistan, including the crime against humanity of gender persecution. Participants advanced their expectations for an international response and recommendations towards accountability for the crimes committed in the country.

The ICJ considers that the UN Human Rights Council must renew and strengthen the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan at its 54th session in October 2023. It must also take urgent steps toward establishing an independent international accountability mechanism to investigate crimes under international law and other serious human rights violations, as well as to collect and preserve evidence of such violations with a view to support future accountability efforts, including prosecution in fair trials.

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