Alert statement on the widespread exclusion of female students in Afghanistan

“This week, the United Nations and media produced new evidence showing that girls in Afghanistan continue to be shut out of school. The UN says that in practice, fewer than one in four provinces are now providing girls access to secondary school.

“The Taliban made public commitments to female students and must now provide dates for their full inclusion at the earliest opportunity. Places of education remain security targets in Afghanistan, and so it is essential that the government also lays out how it will deliver safe learning for all.

“To build long-term peace, those in positions of power in Afghanistan and the international community should ensure Afghanistan’s education system supports the full participation of all social groups – at all levels of society.

“Around the world, gendered patriarchal power imbalances continue to exclude too many women and girls, and are a root cause of many ongoing conflicts.  Challenging, addressing and overcoming this discrimination should be of paramount importance to all peacebuilders.”

  • Statement issued on behalf of Irina Ulmasova-Olive, International Alert Eur-Asia Regional Director, on 9 December, 2021.
  • Interviews with Irina Ulmasova-Olive are available upon request. 
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