AP

UN’s top woman in Afghanistan for talks on Taliban crackdown

Jan 16, 2023, 11:48 PM | Updated: Jan 17, 2023, 1:51 pm

FILE - Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, arrives at United Nations he...

FILE - Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, arrives at United Nations headquarters, on Sept. 20, 2021, during the 76th Session of the U.N. General Assembly in New York. Mohammed, speaking to the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday, urged countries to urgently consider Haiti's request for an international armed force to help restore security in the country troubled by gang violence. A U.N. special envoy said intentional killings and ransom kidnappings have increased sharply, armed gangs control the main roads entering or leaving the capital, the police force is shrinking, and a third of schools are closed. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

(AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The highest-ranking woman in the United Nations arrived in Kabul on Tuesday at the head of a delegation promoting the rights of women and girls, a response to the recent crackdown by Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers.

Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed, a former Nigerian Cabinet minister and a Muslim, was joined by Sima Bahous, executive director of UN Women, the U.N. agency promoting gender equality and women’s rights, and Assistant Secretary General for political affairs Khaled Khiari, U.N. deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said.

Haq said he could not disclose their schedule or specific meetings in Kabul for security reasons.

U.N. officials have held a series of high-level consultations across the Gulf, Asia and Europe “to discuss the situation in Afghanistan in an effort to promote and protect women’s and girls’ rights, peaceful coexistence and sustainable development,” the spokesman said.

Members of the delegation met with leaders of the 57-nation Organization of the Islamic Conference, the Islamic Development Bank, groups of Afghan women in Ankara, Turkey, and Islamabad, and a group of ambassadors and special envoys to Afghanistan based in Doha, the capital of Qatar, he said.

“Throughout the visits,” Haq said, “countries and partners recognized the critical role of the U.N. in finding a pathway to a lasting solution as well as the need to continue to deliver lifesaving support” and asked that efforts be intensified “to reflect the urgency of the situation.”

A Dec. 24 order from the Taliban barring aid groups from employing women is paralyzing deliveries that help keep millions of Afghans alive, and threatening humanitarian services countrywide. As another result of the ban, thousands of women who work for such organizations across the war-battered country are facing the loss of income they desperately need to feed their own families. The Taliban previously banned girls from attending secondary schools and women from attending universities and issued restrictions on foreign travel and their movements within the country.

The Taliban took power again in August 2021 following the chaotic withdrawal of U.S. and NATO forces after 20 years in Afghanistan. As it did when it first ruled the country from 1996 to 2001, the militant group has gradually reimposed Islamic law, or Sharia, driving women out of schools, jobs and aid work, and increasingly into their homes.

The officials of other nations with whom the U.N. leaders met said it was important for the international community to unite and speak with one voice, Haq noted.

“The need for a revitalized and realistic political pathway was consistently highlighted and all remained firm on the fundamental principles, including women’s and girls’ rights to education, work and public life in Afghanistan,” he said.

Haq said the groups agreed in principle to hold an international conference on women and girls in the Muslim world in March.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

moore redmond washington...

Associated Press

U.S. Supreme Court rules against Redmond couple challenging foreign income tax

The court ruled in the case of Charles and Kathleen Moore, of Redmond, Washington after they previously challenged a $15,000 tax bill.

2 days ago

Image:The New York Giants' Willie Mays poses for a photo during baseball spring training in 1972. M...

Associated Press

Willie Mays, Giants’ electrifying ‘Say Hey Kid,’ dies at 93

Willie Mays, whose singular combination of talent, drive and exuberance made him one of baseball’s greatest players, has died. He was 93.

3 days ago

Image: This photo provided by the Washington Department of Ecology shows a derailed BNSF train on t...

Associated Press

Judge orders BNSF to pay Washington tribe nearly $400M for trespassing with oil trains

BNSF Railway must pay the sum to a Native American tribe in Washington after it ran 100-car trains with crude oil on the tribe's reservation.

5 days ago

Photo: In this photo provided by Tieanna Joseph Cade, an amusement park ride is shown stuck with 30...

Associated Press

Crews rescue 28 people trapped upside down high on Oregon amusement park ride

Emergency crews in Oregon rescued 28 people after they were stuck dangling upside down high on a ride at a century-old amusement park.

5 days ago

juneteenth shooting texas...

Associated Press

2 killed and 6 wounded in shooting during a Juneteenth celebration in a Texas park

A shooting in a Texas park left two people dead and six wounded, including two children, on Saturday, authorities said.

6 days ago

Photo: Israeli soldiers drive a tank near the Israeli-Gaza border, in southern Israel, Wednesday, J...

Jack Jeffery, The Associated Press

8 Israeli soldiers killed in southern Gaza in deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months

An explosion in Gaza killed eight Israeli soldiers, the military said Saturday, making it the deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months.

6 days ago

UN’s top woman in Afghanistan for talks on Taliban crackdown