Afghanistan: new protest by Afghan women in Kabul

Afghan women took to the streets to protest for the second day in a row, this time in the capital Kabul. The protesters called on the new Taliban regime to guarantee their rights and the participation of women in shaping a new government in Afghanistan. Meanwhile, a group of presidents and leaders of European countries called on the Taliban insurgents to respect the rights of women and girls. While the announcement of the cabinet by the Taliban is waiting, so far among the tentative names for government positions there are no women.

Women in Kabul

“Education, work, freedom”, were the main demands of the dozens of protesters grouped in the Women’s Political Participation Network who protested in front of the Finance Ministry in Kabul to demand their participation in the new government. Samira Khairkhwa is one of the organizers of the event in which, as she explained, women from all spheres of Afghan society participated, and who demand a meaningful participation in the public life of Afghanistan.

“Women must be included in the new Cabinet of the Taliban (…) The Taliban must remain committed to their promises that women will enjoy all their rights in the future government. The international community must not forget us and must listen to our voice and work to defend our rights “, the activist remarked.

“The rights of women, equality with men”, was another of the slogans of the protesters who mobilized with banners demanding their rights. “A heroic Cabinet with the presence of women” or “Political participation”, “Women, the fundamental law”, are some of the messages they wrote on the posters.

The Taliban, who after taking Kabul, spoke of respecting the right of Afghan women to study and work, and who also said they would form an inclusive government, until now did not allow the participation of women in the meetings to define the cabinet. Insurgent leaders asked to wait until they know what the new guidelines will be. They even affirmed that the civil servants will be paid at home to prevent them from going to their jobs.

“All Afghans, including women, will enjoy their rights in the future government, but the level of participation of women in politics is something that will be decided and made clear once the new government is formed.”said the Taliban spokesman Bilal karimi.

European Presidents

From Europe, a group of political leaders headed by President of Slovakia, Zuzana Caputova and the Prime Minister of Iceland, Katrin Jakobsdottir launched an appeal urging the Taliban movement to respect the rights of women and girls in Afghanistan.

The statement was also signed by Presidents of Greece, Georgia, Estonia and Moldova, as well as Prime Ministers of Denmark, Finland, Norway, New Zealand and Lithuania. The leaders urge the new Afghan authorities to respect the rights and opportunities of the female population, guaranteeing them a level playing field with men. The number two of the Taliban office in Doha, Inayatulhaq Yasini, spoke to the British network BBC and said that the women “They have the right to be” in the cabinet they are forming, although he also admitted “could” not be made up of women. “Especially in the main positions“, he remarked.


The announcement on the composition of the new Afghan government is waiting while negotiations between the Taliban continue. A spokesman for the insurgents indicated that there will be no new information on the formation of the cabinet would not arrive at least until Saturday, the AFP news agency reported.

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In the Panjshir Valley, where anti-Taliban resistance is concentrated, Afghan rebels announced heavy fighting against insurgents, assured Ali Maisam Nazary, a spokesperson for the National Resistance Front (FNR), made up of anti-Taliban militias and former members of the Afghan security forces. The FNR said it inflicted significant losses on the Taliban, although it did not specify the death toll.

During the week, the Italian NGO Emergency reported that it had received in its Kabul hospital “five wounded patients and four who died in the fighting in Gulbahar”, located at the entrance to the Panjshir valley, difficult to access due to its location in the middle of the Hindu Kush mountains. The southern tip of the Asian mountain range is about 80 km north of the Afghan capital.

For its part, a Taliban spokesman reported that they had defeated the resistance in his last stronghold. “Panjshir fell under the control of the Islamic Emirate (as the Taliban call themselves)”Karimi wrote on her Twitter account, the information was confirmed by the Sputnik news agency at the capital’s police headquarters.

Taliban and the world

The United States announced that communication channels with the Taliban will remain open for important issues.Foreign Minister Antony Blinken assured that he will travel to Qatar next week.

Meanwhile he UK stated that it will not recognize the new government of the Taliban. “We see the importance of being able to participate and have a direct line of communication”said Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab on his visit to Islamabad. The foreign minister admitted that the evacuation would not have been possible without a certain degree of cooperation from the insurgents. While the Russian president, Vladimir Putin said he hopes the Taliban will behave in a civilized manner in Afghanistan to reestablish normal diplomatic relations with Kabul.

“The faster the Taliban enter the family of civilized peoples, the easier it will be to maintain contacts, communicate” with them and thus “influence one way or another, ask questions,” said the Russian leader. “Russia has no interest in a disintegration of Afghanistan,” he added.

The European Union imposed a series of conditions to negotiate with the regime Taliban: do not become a haven for terrorists; respect for human rights, especially those of women; the formation of an inclusive government, respect for freedom of the press and guaranteeing access to humanitarian aid.

“We know perfectly well that the Taliban face a shortage of liquidity, not only to pay salaries, but to pay anything”said the EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, at the end of the meeting held yesterday and today in Slovenia by the European Foreign Ministers.“The new Afghan government will have to deal with it and we are ready to help with conditions.”Borrell explained.

While the political office of the Taliban regime in Doha announced that China will maintain its embassy in Afghanistan and that it will provide humanitarian support to the country. Insurgent movement spokesman Suhail Shaheen reported that Abdul Salam Hanafi, a senior Taliban official, “Had a telephone conversation with Wu Jianghao, Vice Chancellor of the People’s Republic of China”.

“The Chinese Vice Foreign Minister said they would keep their embassy in Kabul, adding that our relations would be strengthened compared to the past. Afghanistan can play an important role in the security and development of the region,” he said on social media.


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