Declaration on Afghan Women
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, 23-24 November 2001
The women and girls of Afghanistan have suffered twenty years of war and the constant violation of human rights. Yet they have not been completely silenced. Women's organisations such as the Revolutionary Association of Afghan Women (RAWA), Humanitarian Aid for the Women and Children of Afghanistan (HAWCA) and others have worked hard and have resisted the Taliban regime. Their courage and tenacity deserve public recognition.
Socialist International Women, which has long denounced the systematic violation of the human rights of Afghan women, now demands of all international organisations and member parties of the Socialist International:
- that women's rights be fully recognised as human rights;
- that Afghan women have their own voice and that they have an important role to play in building the peace and in shaping a democratic Afghanistan. For this to happen the presence of women and their own organisations at the negotiating table must be ensured, as well as in the political institutions which will make up the future Afghanistan;
- that the rights of women be declared as human rights both in the future Constitution and in the legislative body which will organise the country's legal system.
We urge that the international community's plans for humanitarian aid should have as their declared objective to help women first and foremost, thus helping to compensate them for all the oppression and discrimination they have suffered.
No plan for the future of Afghanistan nor any political agreement is acceptable without the full participation of women.