UN weighs continued operations in Afghanistan amidst Taliban ban  News
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UN weighs continued operations in Afghanistan amidst Taliban ban 

The UN Tuesday said they are forced to make an “appalling choice” on whether to continue operations in Afghanistan since the Taliban government decided to ban women from working for the UN. The Taliban’s decision to ban women workers from the UN is the latest development in the Taliban’s ongoing crackdown on women, who have already been banned from higher education as well as domestic and international nongovernmental organizations (NGOs).

The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) announced denounced the new ban in a statement. They said, “The ban is unlawful under international law, including the UN Charter, and for that reason the United Nations cannot comply.”

UNAMA Head Roza Otunbayeva has launched an operational review period of the ban and consequences that may flow from it. The UN instructed their Afghan personnel, both men and women, to stay home as the review is carried out. The review is set to last through May 5. UNAMA made clear that “any negative consequences of this crisis for the Afghan people will be the responsibility of the de facto authorities.”

UN Secretary-General also condemned the ban, stating:

The ban on women working for the UN is the Taliban’s most recent crackdown on Afghan women and girls. Previously, in December 2022, the Taliban banned women from attending university. In the same week, the Taliban ordered domestic and international NGOs cease employment of women staff members.

Even in the face of the ongoing crackdown, one of JURIST’s women correspondents from Afghanistan said, “To those who are violating our rights, you can’t quiet Afghan women’s voice. We will keep shining, and we will come out of this oppression, deprivation, and unequal war, victorious.”