Politicians of different political parties rarely come together on anything, but the women of the Senate have found the one thing that they are in complete agreement on.
All 24 female senators recently came together to urge President Joe Biden and his administration to form a plan to ensure the human rights of women and girls in Afghanistan.
As the disastrous withdrawal of American troops took place in Afghanistan, the crackdown on the rights of women and girls was already beginning.
The senators have asked the Biden administration to devise an “interagency plan” that would ensure the basic human rights are being afforded women and girls.
The senators listed some of the human rights violations currently taking place against women and girls in Afghanistan:
“… lacking a legitimate Afghan government and military forces to protect them, women and girls are now suffering the predations of a Taliban regime with a track record of brutalizing, isolating, and denying them life and liberty. Taliban leaders who promised that women would be treated well under the new government are not upholding those commitments.
Women have been the victims of targeted beatings and killings and are banned from leaving home without a male guardian. Afghanistan’s former government, while flawed, was bound by a constitution that promoted human rights, and freedom of speech and assembly for both women and men.”
In addition to women not being allowed to work and both women and girls not allowed to go to school, female athletes are under the gun. Last month, a member of the women’s youth volleyball team was reportedly beheaded for participating in sports.
Mahjabin Hakimi’s death was not known because the Taliban had reportedly threatened her family if they spoke about it.
Life for female journalists has gotten much worse under Taliban rule as well.
Reports of equipment being confiscated, the detaining of journalists, and even reports of physical abuse and torture are becoming all too frequent for female journalists. Marjana Sadat, who worked for Voice of America, said when the Taliban first took over, she was forced to stay inside for a week.
She said the stories she heard of violence against journalists were enough to keep her afraid to step outside. In an interview with Al Jazeera she said, “They have not come right out and said anything is illegal, but the fear is very real.”
While the Biden administration’s chief priority should be getting the hundreds of American citizens and vetted Afghans who assisted the U.S. over the last 20 years out of the country safely, right behind should be the securing of basic human rights of Afghan women and girls.
As the Biden administration continues to drag its feet regarding what can only be called a humanitarian crisis of its own making, the incidents of child marriages are also on the rise.
The women of the United States Senate are trying to see to it that if the Biden administration does not keep its promises to the American people, at the very least, maybe promises made to women and girls trying to survive in Afghanistan will be honored.
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