Watchdog Concerned Over Women's Rights In Afghanistan As Taliban Make Territorial Gains

Watchdog Concerned Over Women's Rights in Afghanistan as Taliban Make Territorial Gains

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 05th August, 2021) Justice for women's rights offenders in Afghanistan remains elusive and the law that aims to provide legal protection to women is becoming ineffectual as the Taliban (a terrorist group, outlawed in Russia) makes more territorial gains across the country,according to a prominent rights watchdog.

"Gains by Taliban forces as the United States completes its troop withdrawal leaves the current Afghan state, and women's rights in particular, uncertain," Human Rights Watch said.

In a bid to promote human rights and specifically women's rights, the government of Afghanistan passed the Elimination of Violence against Women (EVAW Law) through a presidential decree in 2009.

The EVAW law makes 22 acts of abuse toward women criminal offenses, including rape, battery, forced marriage, preventing women from acquiring property, and prohibiting a woman or girl from going to school or work.

The law helped facilitate a rise in reporting and investigations of violent crimes against women and girls and the convictions of those responsible.

Despite falling short of expectations, it introduced the establishment and expansion of legal aid groups and the training of a cadre of female lawyers, prosecutors, and judges, which have resulted in substantial improvements in legal protections for women.

"But as the opposition armed group, the Taliban, have made territorial gains, the prospect of a Taliban-dominated government or descent into fragmented civil war threatens the existing constitutional order, including provisions guaranteeing women's equality and the EVAW law," HRW said.

The rights group pressed international donors to strengthen their commitment to protecting Afghan women amid expanding Taliban control, saying that "governments that have long supported women's rights in Afghanistan should advocate forcefully for enforcement of the EVAW law, which has driven slow but genuine change."