Human Rights Council: Oral statement on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan


11 September 2023. International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and Armanshahr/OPEN ASIA made an oral statement for the Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan. Read the oral statement below.

UN Human Rights Council – 54th Session

Item 2: Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan

11 September 2023

Madam Vice-President, Mister Special Rapporteur,

FIDH and its member organization Armanshahr/OPEN ASIA welcome the Special Rapporteur’s oral update.

For the past two years, the Council has examined the situation of human rights in Afghanistan at every session, detailing the deteriorating conditions for civil society in Afghanistan and emphasizing the need for urgent action to protect the Afghan population.

These reports mirror the information civil society is still able to gather from inside the country. Reprisal killings are continuing unabated; the Taliban engages in torture, extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, and other serious abuses in complete impunity. Journalists and human rights defenders are subjected to arbitrary detentions. Minorities are targeted. Women and girls are now living under a system that amounts to gender persecution under international law.

More than two years since the Taliban’s seizure of power, human rights organizations outside of Afghanistan continue to receive desperate pleas for help from activists, women, and others who remain at risk in Afghanistan.

Under the Taliban, the rule of law has been obliterated and there is no immediate prospect for the reestablishment of democratic institutions and constitutional order.

While we strongly support the renewal of the Special Rapporteur’s mandate, and fully support his work, we continue to call on the Council to set up an independent investigative mechanism to complement the Special Rapporteur’s work. This mechanism should be established with a view to promote accountability for human rights violations committed by all parties.

We further call on the office of the Special Rapporteur and all UN bodies to take proactive steps to cooperate with existing accountability mechanisms, including the work of the International Criminal Court.

Thank you.

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