Concerns mount over missing female Afghan activists

The European Union (EU), Germany, the UK, the Netherlands, and the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan have have expressed serious concerns over the fate of the four missing Afghan female activists who disappeared after participating in protests to demand fundamental rights for women.

While Tamana Paryani and Parwana Ibrahimkhil went missing in January, Zahra Mohammadi and Mursal Ayar disappeared last week, TOLO News reported.

On Sunday, Deborah Lyons, the UN Secretary-General’s envoy for Afghanistan, met the Taliban regime’s Deputy Prime Minister Abdul Kabir, to convey her concerns about the safety of the women.

In a tweet on Monday, the UNAMA said: “Convey(ed) deepening concern about the well-being of ‘disappeared’ women activists. Kabir committed to seek answers. We appreciate this & await update. World support to Afghanistan is eroded without respect for all Afghan’s rights.”

The EU’s special representative for Afghanistan, Tomas Niklasson, said the detention and disappearance of citizens contradicts Islamic Emirate’s commitments to protect human rights.

“Taliban announced ‘interim government’ claims to be owned by the people. Arbitrary detention of citizens and disappearances undermine such claims and contradict their declared commitments to upholding human rights. I join the call for an immediate release,” Niklasson said.

Meanwhile, Potzel Markus, Germany’s Ambassador-designate to Afghanistan and Hugo Shorter, Charge d’Affaires of the UK Mission to Afghanistan, have addressed the disappearance of women, saying the issue is worrying, TOLO News reported.

In response, Bilal Karimi, deputy spokesman of the Taliban said that “our investigations are still continuing to find these women and girls”.

“No exact information is available for now. When the investigations end, we will share the details,” he added.




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