The Herald Magazine recently published an article contending that "scores" of Afghan women have turned to prostitution in order to support themselves. Widowed by decades of civil war, forbidden from work , and largely confined to their homes, Afghan women have few opportunities to gain income.
Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) spokesperson Zarghuna Hashemi stated, "There are hundreds of prostitutes roaming the streets of Kabul and their numbers are rising every day. They are not the regular professionals we had in Kabul before or during the war. These women are a product of the economic turmoil of the last three years."
A former member of the Taliban's religious police explained that many prostitutes approach potential customers by pretending to be beggars, then make appointments for sex. He said clients "are mainly shop keepers and their trading partners in Pakistan, Iran and the Gulf," and said that storerooms and attics are often the site of the exchanges. Other women live in brothels, of which there are about 25-30 in Kabul.
Prostitutes and johns who are caught by authorities often avoid serious punishment through the offering of judicial bribes. Taliban soldiers, who are allowed to frequent brothel prostitutes at no charge, are unlikely to crack down on the practice.
Media Resources: The Herald Magazine - August, 1999
12/9/2013 Mixed Results for Afghanistan's Anti-Violence Against Women Law - The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released their annual report on violence against women in Afghanistan yesterday, revealing mixed results of the country's Elimination of Violence against Women Law.
"A Way to Go: An Update on Implementation of the Law on the Elimination of Violence against Women in Afghanistan [PDF]," found that there was a 28 percent increase in reports of violence against women from 2012 to 2013 , but only 17 percent of those were prosecuted under EVAW - a small 2 percent increase from last year.
The law, which was issued by the executive decree of President Hamid Karzai in 2009, criminalizes 22 acts of violence against women and specifies punishment for perpetrators. . . .