Afghan Women Fight For Their Rights

Wendolee Garcia Martinez

As peace talks continue, Afghan women are making sure they are not forgotten in the negotiations between the Afghanistan government and the Taliban. Over the past year, women have been murdered for speaking up and fighting for their rights. This movement has been causing them to be in recurring danger of assasination.

According to a report on The Guardian, in March 2020 a “horde of men lynched 27-year-old Farkhunda in Kabul.” This incident was followed by a group of men who stoned a 19-year-old woman named Rokhshana. Newly, militants beheaded seven ethnic Hazaras which included two women and a small girl. 

These injustices have led women to protest in the capital by carrying the coffins of the decapitated victims. They are demanding that the government protect them, but the Taliban has forced many out of their homes in fear that the government won’t provide protection that has been offered to them by international armies since 2001. The women that ran away include shelter employees, school administrators and journalists. 

One of the women that fled was Hassina Sarwari, a director of Women For Afghan Women which is an organization that ran women’s shelter for children of imprisoned women. 

Sarwari claims that she fled to Takhar after a man called and declared that her killing was “sanctioned by Islam.” The Taliban then burned down the charity center and destroyed it’s offices.  

Although the Taliban’s actions are putting people in fear of their lives and their families lives, they are not responsible for the killing of  Farkhunda, and it is not clear if they had anything to do with the murder of Rokhshana, says The Guardian. 

“Culture is one of the hardest challenges,” Former Minster Jala Hautyunyan said. “As long as society supports violence and lawless acts, civil rights activists will be banging their heads against the wall.” 

The Taliban claims that if they were to take over, then women activists would be able to continue. 

 “If they make things better for women but don’t work against Islam, then we don’t have a problem,” Taliban Official Spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahed said. 

On the other hand, not everyone is on board. Outside of Afghanistan people have been spreading awareness and speaking about the discrimination towards women. 

The past 14 years, the foreigners have spread awareness of equality in Afghanistan,”said Taliban Commander Shahidullah Shahid.

  “Women going to parliament, working as women’s representatives, have been trained by the infidels and they are not following the rules of sharia. First, we tell them to stop things that are against sharia. If they don’t, we take other measures, and we do jihad against them.”  

Women in Afghanistan continue to fight for their voice to be heard until they no longer have to fear for their lives.