Advocacy statements

UN must investigate human rights violations in Afghanistan

  • Date / 2021
  • Location / Afghanistan
  • Relevant Institution / UN Human Rights Council

International Humanist and Ethical Union

UN Human Rights Council, 31st special session of the Human Rights Council on the serious human rights concerns and situation in Afghanistan (24 August 2021)


Over the past few weeks, we have looked on with great sadness and horror, as abuses suffered by Afghan people escalate, posing an urgent threat to their human rights, safety, and freedom.

The international community must act.

History and current events show us that a whole host of people, including women and girls, women and LGBTI+ rights defenders, human rights defenders and those promoting humanist values, journalists, writers, civil servants, interpreters, former security personnel, and minorities and people with disabilities, are targets for extensive human rights abuses and violations by the Taliban. Some of the many violations that have taken place, may amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity.[1]

The Council must pass a resolution that reflects the severity of the situation on the ground, and does service to the dignity of the Afghan people. Including:

Crucially, the Council must also:

There cannot be a reign of impunity and we must ensure protection for those who remain. Any resolution which does not include a meaningful mechanism for monitoring, reporting and accountability, would be a shameful failure by the international community and Council itself. It would betray all the courageous people who have risked so much to defend human rights for all, in Afghanistan.

[1] https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=27370&LangID=E

Suggested academic reference

'UN must investigate human rights violations in Afghanistan', Humanists International

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