Statement of the Diplomatic Missions of Afghanistan: Marking One Year of the Taliban’s Military Takeover

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Statement of the Diplomatic Missions of Afghanistan: Marking One Year of the Taliban’s Military Takeover

August 15, 2022 

Today marks one year since the Taliban’s forced takeover and occupation of Afghanistan, which plunged the country into a deep political, economic, social, and humanitarian crisis. Afghan citizens are deprived of basic services and face grave human rights abuses and violations, poverty, repression, and fear. Almost overnight, the Taliban rolled back hard-won gains achieved through the joint effort and sacrifice of the people of Afghanistan and the international community since 2001.

Despite the violent and illegitimate nature of the Taliban takeover, they were offered the opportunity to deliver on expressed commitments in relation to the fundamental rights of all Afghans, especially women and girls, inclusive and representative governance, and other fundamental issues. many countries and international organizations adopted a policy of dialogue and engagement with the group, with the hope that such interaction would positively influence the Taliban’s approach and actions toward the people’s expectations.

One year on, the Taliban have comprehensively failed to deliver on all their commitments and re-enacted draconian policies and directives. Among others, the group has banned girls from attending secondary education and systematically erased women and girls from public life by restricting their fundamental right to work and play an active role in society. Preventing girls from education not only constitutes a grave human rights violation but also jeopardizes the country’s progress and future.

Deliberate and systemic targeting of Hazara and Shia Communities, arbitrary detentions, including of women activists, forced disappearances and forced displacements, collective punishment, media crackdowns, extra-judicial killings, and torture, including of former members of the national security forces and government officials constitute normal practices under Taliban rule. These and other measures have perpetuated a climate of absolute fear and physical and psychological insecurity, forcing hundreds of thousands of Afghans to leave the country.

The Taliban have rejected consistent national and international appeals for the creation of an inclusive and representative government, which is a critical need for political stability and strengthening national trust in the country. Various political actors, from across different social, ethnic and political spectrums have stood ready to engage in dialogue to reach a political understanding and consensus. However, the Taliban, as underlined in their manifesto released in May 2022 which rejects any kind of people-based government, remain defiant on the continuation of their exclusive and repressive rule against the desire and demands of the absolute majority of the Afghan people and the international community, pushing the country on a dangerous trajectory.

Several known international and regional terrorist and extremist groups have found a re-invigorated presence in Afghanistan. The killing of Ayman Al-Zawahiri, leader of Al-Qaeda in Kabul, affirmed that the Taliban are hosting and sheltering a coterie of foreign terrorist groups which are threatening the security and stability of Afghanistan, our region, and the wider world.

We believe that given the Taliban’s unwillingness and inability to deliver on their expressed commitments, and the deteriorating security, economic, political, and social situation in Afghanistan, the international community should adopt a new and adjusted approach. To improve and stabilize the situation such an approach could include the following:

  • Establish effective forms of engagement at bilateral and multilateral fora in order to influence the group to respond to the demands of the people for a political process leading to inclusive and legitimate governance, and to address the benchmarks contained in the UN Resolution 2513 and part II of the Doha Agreement that stresses the importance of reactivating the intra-Afghan talks, Afghanistan’s future will have to include the Taliban, but not be determined and dominated by them.
  • Engage and work with committed personalities of integrity who enjoy support from democratic constituencies. The people of Afghanistan are still determined to improve the situation and assume control of their future destiny. Experience shows that no system can survive in our diverse society without respecting and embracing the will of the people.
  • Adopt more coordinated and effective measures to address the dangerous threat emanating from the establishment of an Islamic Emirate that could be applied outside Afghanistan, and the presence of various foreign terrorist groups, which constitute a major constitutes a major security threat for Afghanistan, our region, and the wider world.
  • Implement the UN travel ban for all the Taliban leaders, knowing they use freedom of movement – which they deny to over half of our population – to deepen ties with terrorist networks and obtain legitimacy from rouge states against Afghans.
  • Enhancing humanitarian assistance to meet the urgent need of the Afghan people.
  • Redouble support for the preservation of the fundamental human rights of the people of Afghanistan, including the protection of the rights of women, girls, and other vulnerable groups

The diplomatic missions of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan will continue to fulfill our historic responsibility at this crucial juncture in our nation’s life by representing the concerns, demands, and aspirations of millions of our voiceless compatriots. We remain firmly committed to meeting the needs of our growing and vibrant diaspora community including by providing continued consular services. We further remain committed to working closely with the host countries, friends of Afghanistan, and our diaspora community and contributing however possible to ongoing international efforts to achieve a peaceful, stable, and democratic Afghanistan in which the rights, honor, dignity, and will of our people are upheld.

We express our gratitude to the international community for their continued commitment to the people of Afghanistan at this difficult point in time in our nation’s history.

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