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Thursday, September 21, 2023

OIC asks Taliban to reconsider ban on women from working for NGOs

Expressing concerns about the current developments in Afghanistan, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has called on the Taliban to reconsider the decision to ban women from working for NGOs. OIC called the ban on women from working in NGOs and education is “in violation of the purposes of Islamic law and the methodology of the Messenger of Allah”, TOLOnews reported.

The statement was issued by OIC in its final communique of the Extraordinary Meeting of the OIC Executive Committee on “The Recent Developments and the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan.”

The 57-member states group also expressed grave concerns over “the worsening humanitarian and human rights situation in Afghanistan” and called on Islamic Emirate to respect human rights, including the rights of women and children.

In an earlier statement, OIC Secretary-General Hissein Brahim stressed that the OIC has been following with deep concern the developments of the “unfortunate events” in Afghanistan.

He noted that “we conveyed, through my special envoy, messages to the de facto authority in which we emphasized the importance of the government’s fulfilment of its previous promises to open schools for girls in light of the solid and clear foundations of the Islamic religion that encourage education.”

These remarks came in the speech of the OIC Secretary-General before the emergency meeting of the open-ended Executive Committee, which convened on January 11 in Jeddah, to discuss developments and the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan.

This meeting was convened in light of the recent measures imposed by the de facto authority in Afghanistan to close schools and universities to girls and women in addition to the suspension of women’s work in national and international NGOs.

On December 24, the Taliban issued a decree banning women from working in NGOs. This came after they had already suspended university education for women and secondary schooling for girls until what they termed further notice.

In a press statement this month, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Tur called on the Taliban to revoke a raft of policies that target the rights of women and girls, noting both the “terrible, cascading effects” on their lives and the destabilizing risks such policies pose to Afghan society.

The Taliban took over Afghanistan in August 2021 and imposed policies severely restricting basic rights–particularly those of women and girls, according to Human Rights Watch.

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