Security Council Press Statement on Situation in Afghanistan
The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Linda Thomas-Greenfield (United States):
The members of the Security Council expressed deep concern regarding the increasing erosion of respect for the human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and girls in Afghanistan by the Taliban, including through imposition of restrictions that limit access to education, employment, freedom of movement, and women’s full, equal and meaningful participation in public life, and emphasized that these restrictions contradict the expectations of the international community and the commitments made by the Taliban to the Afghan people.
The members of the Security Council further expressed deep concern regarding the announcements by the Taliban that all women must cover their faces in public spaces and in media broadcasts, only leave home in cases of necessity, and that violations of this directive will lead to the punishment of their male relatives. They also expressed concern regarding the decision by the Taliban to dissolve several key national institutions.
The members of the Security Council called on the Taliban to swiftly reverse the policies and practices which are currently restricting the human rights and fundamental freedoms of Afghan women and girls. They also reiterated their call on the Taliban to adhere to their commitments to reopen schools for all female students without further delay.
The members of the Security Council further expressed deep concern regarding the volatile situation in Afghanistan, including political, economic, social and security challenges and their impact on lives of the Afghan people, in particular continued terrorist attacks targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure, including in religious minority communities, across Afghanistan and cultivation, production, trade and trafficking of illicit drugs.
The members of the Security Council further expressed deep concern regarding the dire humanitarian and economic situation in Afghanistan, recognized the need for strengthened efforts to provide humanitarian assistance and other activities that support basic human needs in Afghanistan, emphasizes that the effective delivery of humanitarian assistance requires all actors to allow full, safe and unhindered humanitarian access for all humanitarian personnel, including women, and further recognizes the need to help address the substantial challenges facing Afghanistan’s economy, including through efforts to restore the banking and financial systems and efforts to enable the use of assets belonging to Afghanistan’s Central Bank for the benefit of the Afghan people.
The members of the Security Council requested the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) to continue to closely monitor and report on the situation, and requested the Special Representative of the Secretary-General to continue to engage with all relevant Afghan political actors and stakeholders, including relevant authorities, on these issues, in accordance with the mandate of UNAMA, and keep the Security Council informed on progress.