Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

May-22-02

Eleanor Smeal Urges President to Fulfill Promise to Afghan Women

Women’s Rights Leader Calls for Increased Security, Funding for Afghanistan

WASHINGTON, DC – Feminist Majority President Eleanor Smeal called on the Bush administration today to expand security forces and increase funding for reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan. Despite pleas from the United Nations, the Afghan interim government, and the women’s rights community, President Bush has refused to expand the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) beyond Kabul. Meanwhile, factional fighting has increased in the war torn country and instability threatens to undermine the success of the loya jirga process, the establishment of democracy, and the restoration of women’s rights.

“President Bush promised that the U.S. would not abandon the Afghan people, especially Afghan women,” said Smeal. “It is time for the President to make good on his promise. Allowing Afghanistan to descend into chaos is not only abandoning the Afghan people but would also provide a base from which terrorism, al Qaeda, and the Taliban could thrive again.”

Smeal continued, “We cannot wait any longer. The loya jirga is quickly approaching, and this is our chance to help ensure that democracy prevails. We also must act now for women’s security. Afghan women continue to be marginalized by factional fighting and warlordism.”

Feminist Majority researchers who have traveled to Afghanistan continuously report that Afghan women do not feel safe to walk the streets without the burqa. Our researchers have also observed that security forces are not present throughout all of Kabul, let alone Afghanistan.

The Feminist Majority stands with leading members of Congress in demanding that the Bush administration increase the number of peace troops in the ISAF and expand the force throughout Afghanistan. Without security, a civil society cannot exist – women will continue to be in danger and their rights in jeopardy.

Increased funding is also crucial to the restoration of desperately needed educational and healthcare services in the country. “Far more resources are needed to create a ‘Marshall Plan’ for Afghanistan. The U.S. has pledged only $297 million for Afghan reconstruction this year,” said Smeal. “We are spending billions of dollars on the war effort, and it is now time to invest more in creating peace and stability. We cannot forget that the successful reconstruction of Afghanistan – including full equality for women – is an essential part of the war on terrorism.”

Since 1996, the Feminist Majority has brought together more than 220 leading human rights and women's organizations in the U.S. and around the world to demand the end of human rights abuses in Afghanistan and restore the rights of Afghan women and girls. Our accomplishments include helping stop the U.S. and U.N. from officially recognizing the Taliban, sending more humanitarian aid to Afghanistan, and increasing the number of Afghan refugees allowed to enter the U.S. Our sister organization, the Feminist Majority Foundation, is supporting Afghan women in U.S. colleges while also helping the Afghan Ministry for Women’s Affairs.


Media Resources: Feminist Majority


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

1/27/2016 Study Exposes 'Gender Gap' in Media Coverage of Reproductive Issues - A new study by the Women's Media Center has revealed more than half of news stories focusing on reproductive issues are written by men. According to WMC Media Watch: the Gender Gap in Coverage of Reproductive Issues, men penned 52 percent of bylines discussing issues of reproductive health care - including contraception and abortion - compared to just 37 percent by women. . . .
 
1/27/2016 Taiwan Elects First Woman President - In a landslide victory, the leader of Taiwan's Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Tsai Ing-wen won the country's presidential election, becoming the first woman in Taiwan's history to hold the position. Emphasizing her party's commitment to maintaining Taiwan's independence from China, Tsai won over young voters eager to usher in a political changing of the guard following some 70 years of dominance by the pro-Chinese unification party, the Kuomintang (KMT), chaired by presidential opponent Eric Chu. . . .
 
1/26/2016 Anti-Abortion Extremists Behind Planned Parenthood Attack Videos Indicted - Two anti-abortion extremists responsible for last year's misleading videos attacking Planned Parenthood have been indicted on criminal charges by a grand jury in Houston, Texas. On Monday, Harris County district attorney Devon Anderson announced that David Daleiden, the director of the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) - the group behind deceptive videos falsely accusing Planned Parenthood of illegally selling fetal tissue - was indicted on a felony charge of tampering with a governmental record and on a misdemeanor charge related to the purchasing of human organs. . . .