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Don't forget Afghan women and children

In an op-ed for USA TODAY, Natalie Gonnella-Platts, the Director of the Women's Initiative at the Bush Institute, writes that there are three tangible actions we can take to help Afghan women and children

Article by Sarah Gibbons February 10, 2022 //   2 minute read

In the past six months, Afghan women and girls have seen a steady elimination of their rights and status within society. The situation, while dire, is not hopeless if the international community acts quickly. 

In an op-ed for USA TODAY, Natalie Gonnella-Platts, the Director of the Women's Initiative at the Bush Institute, writes that there are three tangible actions we can take to help Afghan women and children. Below is an excerpt from the essay:

"First, the global community can’t look away. You can’t identify as a feminist and remain silent on what’s happening in Afghanistan. Afghan women are fighting for their existence. And amid the catastrophic circumstances in country, women and children are shouldering most of the burden of hunger and poverty. Some mothers have already faced the unimaginable choice of selling their organs and their children just to feed their families.

As much as the Taliban try to deflect the truth, these realities are not secret. On a daily basis, brave Afghans capture the repression and desperation they face. Tamana Paryani documented on video the very moment the Taliban came for her and her sisters at their home. She, her sisters and fellow protester Parwana Ibrahimkhel have not been seen since.

Influencers everywhere must do a better job of lifting the voices of Afghan women far and wide. Afghan women and the organizations working on their behalf must have an equal seat at decision-making tables. Governments and international organizations must hold the Taliban to account for their continued violation of human rights. We have seen before what happens when Afghan women aren’t included in consistent and meaningful ways in dialogue and diplomacy. Let’s not repeat the same mistakes."

Read the full article here.

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