Monday, March 08, 2010

Afghanistan: Press briefing about the Law on Elimination of Violence against Women

Source: United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) - The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) has initiated a press briefing about the Law on Elimination of Violence against Women in Kunduz.

Briefing the media on the contents of the law were the Kunduz Chief Prosecutor, the Head of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) and the Head of Department of Women Affairs.

The law mandates that governments ensure the protection of the legal rights and dignity of women, and maintain family integrity while fighting against customs, traditions and practices which contradict the Islamic Sharia and cause violence against women.

It calls for the protection of women who are victims or at risk of violence, and the prevention of violence against women. It also urges providing public awareness and training on violence against women, and prosecuting the perpetrators of violence against women.

"This law has been enacted in accordance with the provisions set forth in Articles 24 and 54 of the Afghan Constitution which is protecting the human dignity and maintaining family integrity," said Kunduz Chief Prosecutor Abdul Khaliq Lalpurwal.

The chief prosecutor explained the 22 acts deemed as constituting violence against women according to the Law on Elimination of Violence against Women.

"Prohibiting from the right to education, work and access to health services are the acts of violence which women will be protected against based on the law," added Mr Lalpurwal.

"We all believe that there is no difference between man and woman from the perspective of human dignity, said Zaidullah Paiwand, the Head of AIHRC in Kunduz.

Mr Paiwand believes that efforts done in eliminating violence against women is not enough, adding that it requires more work because violence against women became a bad custom and tradition in Afghan society.

"The responsibility of each Ministry and organization has been mentioned in the law, so let's try our best and start a new campaign for the elimination of violence against women," said Mrs Naderah Geyah, the Head of Kunduz Women Affairs Department.

Mrs Geyah says making the public aware of the need to eliminate violence against women is not enough, and called on all relevant organizations to focus their efforts on implementing the law.

By Shamsuddin Hamedi, UNAMA

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