Taliban Detains Women’s Rights Activists, UN Expresses Concern

Taliban arrest women's rights activists, UN expresses concern

Since 2021, the Taliban has enacted a series of restrictions that control women’s lives. (Represent)


The United Nations voiced deep concern on Friday after the Taliban interrupted a news conference in Afghanistan, prompting female participants to search the body and arrest the event organizer.

“We have received extremely disturbing reports that yesterday afternoon (Thursday) in Kabul, several security officials in fact interrupted a press conference of a civil society organization of the country. women,” UN human rights office spokesman Jeremy Laurence told reporters in Geneva.

One woman, Zarifa Yaqobi, and “her four male colleagues” were arrested at the event organized by the Afghan Women’s Movement for Equality, and remain in custody, he said.

“We are concerned about the welfare of these five individuals and have sought information from the de facto authorities regarding their detention.”

Citing anonymous sources, Laurence said the other women who attended the event were held for about an hour, and had their bodies searched and their phones checked before being released.

One participant corroborated that account, telling AFP Yaqobi was the organizer of the event to “launch a new women’s rights movement”.

Mandegar, a women’s rights activist, said the four men arrested were her brothers.

“When we started the event, the Taliban told us we couldn’t hold out and asked the journalists present to leave,” she said.

After the incident ended, the Taliban sent female police officers to “check our phones and delete all pictures of the event,” she said.

“They also insulted and threatened us before allowing us to leave one by one.”

“When you can’t even organize a small event to claim basic human rights, it’s disappointing,” Mandegar said.

Since returning to power in August 2021, the Taliban have enacted a series of restrictions that control women’s lives, barring girls from returning to secondary school and barring women from participating in many jobs. government.

Laurence stressed that “all Afghans have the right to peaceful assembly, freedom of expression and opinion, without fear of arrest or intimidation.”

“We urge the authorities in practice to respect these rights,” he said.

He also reiterated that Afghanistan is a signatory to the Convention Against Torture and called on the Taliban to “respect the rights of all detainees.”

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from an aggregated feed.)

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