UN experts equate discrimination against women in Afghanistan to crimes against humanity

Amnesty recalls that women in Afghanistan suffer «unlimited oppression» by the Taliban. – ADRIEN VAUTIER / ZUMA PRESS / CONTACTOPHOTO

A group of United Nations rapporteurs has denounced that abuses committed by the Taliban against women and girls in Afghanistan may amount to crimes against humanity and called on the international community to continue to press for the respect of freedoms and rights.

The experts warned that human rights violations «have increased dramatically» in a country that already had some of the «most serious and unacceptable» abuses in the world.

In this sense, they have condemned the veto to women in secondary education or in parks and gyms and, in general terms, that leisure is reduced to a minimum. «Confining women to their homes is tantamount to imprisoning them and will likely lead to higher levels of domestic violence and mental health problems,» they said in a statement.

The Taliban also extend their control efforts to men deemed ‘responsible’ for women who break the regime’s strict doctrines, which experts say means encouraging male citizens to «control» the behavior of others themselves, to avoid suffering punishment themselves.

The rapporteurs have urged the Taliban to respect international law and to release all those arbitrarily detained for their persecution of women. They also want women to be able to carry out their activist work «without intimidation and attacks».

They have asked the rest of the world to make respect for women’s rights «central» to any discussion with the Afghan regime, while hoping that other countries can investigate and even prosecute those who carry out «gender persecution» in Afghanistan.