Copy and paste the text below into your preferred writing/email software:
[type representative’s name and title here]
[type department here]
[type address here]
[type date here]
I am writing to request our government denounce the widespread and systematic discrimination experienced by women and girls in Afghanistan, particularly since the fall of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan on 15 August 2021.
The severe and systematic deprivation of women’s and girls’ fundamental rights by reason of their sex characteristics and gender, perpetrated by the Taliban’s discriminatory and misogynistic policies, and supported by harsh enforcement methods, constitutes gender persecution – a crime against humanity.
The international community must remain engaged with Afghan women and support accountability for the serious human rights violations that are occurring.
I ask that you adopt and implement the recommendations of the UN Working Group on Discrimination against Women and Girls and the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Afghanistan on the Situation of women and girls in Afghanistan. These include:
- Ensuring that human rights of women and girls in Afghanistan are central to all policy decisions and engagement with the de facto authorities.
- Ensuring the representative, equal and meaningful participation of Afghan women in all deliberations concerning the country’s future.
- Supporting, with long-term flexible funding among other means, women-led organisations operating inside Afghanistan, including new businesses and civil society organisations working on women’s rights and gender equality.
- Taking all possible steps to support access to education for all girls.
- Consulting Afghan women as equal partners to inform policy priorities and decision-making, amplify advocacy led by Afghan women inside the country, and ensure that their voices inform the work and decisions of the international community and humanitarian organisations.
- Grant support and protection to all Afghan women and girls who are outside Afghanistan, and take measures to ensure their long-term security, including by granting them refugee, protective or regular status, facilitating their safe resettlement and expanding the provision of educational scholarships and mental health services.
- Take measures to ensure that gender persecution against women and girls in Afghanistan is fully investigated so that perpetrators and complicit actors can be held accountable.
- Mandate and support the development of a report on gender apartheid, with a view to developing further normative standards and tools, galvanizing international legal condemnation and action to end it and ensure its non-repetition.
- Support international and Afghan civil society justice-seeking efforts for Afghan women and girls for violations of their human rights, including through the International Criminal Court, the International Court of Justice, universal jurisdiction and all applicable human rights mechanisms.
- Keep the situation of women and girls high on the international agenda and continue to create opportunities for Afghan women to address the bodies of the United Nations.
I believe that you as my government representative have an important role to play in addressing the widespread and systematic discrimination experienced by women and girls in Afghanistan. Thank you for considering this request. I’d appreciate a response that outlines what actions you are taking to address these issues.
[Type your name]