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feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

August-02-04

Report: Afghanistan Could Implode With Terrible Consequences

A recent British Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Affairs report asserts that the improvement of security in Afghanistan is one of the highest priorities in the world. The report concludes that more resources for the current International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) are desperately needed. According to the report, “There is a real danger if these resources are not provided soon that Afghanistan – a fragile state in one of the most sensitive and volatile regions of the world – could implode, with terrible consequences.”

According to the report, attacks and assassinations of aid workers, including women working to register women to vote, have been undermining the reconstruction process in Afghanistan. Over 30 aid workers have been killed in Afghanistan since last March, reports BBC News. At least two people were killed, including a member of the Afghan election coordinating body, by an explosion at a polling center last week. In June, three female election workers were killed in Jalalabad, and 16 Afghans were shot dead because they had voter registration cards.

Meanwhile, Human Rights Watch issued a statement urging for the immediate expansion of NATO forces in Afghanistan to provide security for the elections scheduled to take place in October. According to Sam Zarifi of Human Rights Watch, “Recent experience in Afghanistan shows that the warlords will take power when there is a security vacuum … For the elections scheduled later this year to come off, NATO will need both to provide additional security for vulnerable candidates and voting sites, and to help disarm militia.”

TAKE ACTION by donating to Ms. magazine’s “Women of Afghanistan Investigative Fund”

Media Resources: Human Rights Watch 6/25/04; BBC News 8/204; Feminist Daily News Wire 7/28/04; UK Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Affairs Seventh Report 8/2004


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