UN Launches Violence Against Women in Afghanistan Campaign
The UN announced a 16 day campaign to eliminate violence against women in Afghanistan in a press conference today. During the campaign, which ends on Human Rights Day, the UN is "supporting a diverse range of activities across Afghanistan to enhance awareness and, by extension, to mobilize or increase attention" to the problem of violence against women in the country.
Norah Niland, the UN's chief human rights officer in Afghanistan, said "Women and girls are at risk of rape in their homes, in their villages, and in detention facilities. Rape is not unique to Afghanistan, but the socio-political context does have particular characteristics that exacerbate the problem. Shame is attached to rape victims rather than to the perpetrator. Victims often find themselves being prosecuted for the offence of zina, otherwise known as adultery. For the vast majority of victims, there is very little possibility of finding justice. There is no explicit provision in the 1976 Afghan Penal Code that criminalizes rape."
Zia Moballegh, acting Country Director for the International Center for Human Rights and Democratic Development, "Real peace and national development without the elimination of violence against women is not possible...Destruction of female schools, the registered cases of murder, and use of acid and other murders under the title of defending female members only outlines some of the aspects of violence against women."
Media Resources: UN Press Conference Transcript 11/30/09
11/25/2015 Afghan Women Launch 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence - Afghanistan marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and begun participating in the worldwide 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, which is being called in Afghanistan "Peace from Home to the World." During the launch day's event, which was attended by government officials, including First Lady Rula Ghani and women's rights activists, speakers expressed their commitment to ending violence against women.
First Lady, Rula Ghani gave a speech on ending violence against women and supporting women by stating that "war often leads society towards violence and this violence is in violation of human dignity. . . .