As part of its mandated work to assist the Government and people of Afghanistan in laying the foundations for sustainable peace and development in the country, Human Rights officials from the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) met with rural women in the north-eastern province of Kunduz.
The meeting, conducted last week as part of the advocacy programme of UNAMA’s Human Rights staff, focused on the rights of women and their role in peacebuilding, consistent with the framework of the 2009 Elimination of Violence Against Women (EVAW) legislation and the Afghan People’s Dialogue for Peace initiative.
The Afghan People’s Dialogue on Peace was developed during the past three years by civil society groups, with UNAMA support. Some 6,000 Afghans took part in the process, sharing their grievances and aspirations, and identifying the main drivers of conflict and proposed solutions.
The meeting with rural women in Kunduz was held in Arbab Ramazan, one of the biggest rural localities in the Aliabad district of Kunduz, with a population of some 5,000.
A UNAMA advocacy partner, civil society activist Sharana Aymaq, discussed the findings and recommendations of the Afghan People’s dialogue with the rural women. She also discussed the articles of EVAW law on forced and underage marriage, harmful traditional practices and domestic violence.
The EVAW law criminalizes 22 acts of violence against women, including rape and beating, and specifies punishment for perpetrators.
UNAMA officials are scheduled to conduct similar meetings with rural women in other parts of Kunduz to create awareness about women’s rights and the role of women in peace and reconciliation.
UNAMA is mandated to support the Afghan Government and relevant international and local non-governmental organizations to assist in the full implementation of the fundamental freedoms and human rights provisions of the Afghan Constitution and international treaties to which Afghanistan is a State party, in particular those regarding the full enjoyment by women of their human rights.