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50th Session of the Human Rights Council

National Statement during the Interactive Dialogue on the High Commissioner’s Update on Afghanistan, 15-16 June 2022

Australia thanks the High Commissioner for her update on Afghanistan.

Afghan women and girls make an enormous contribution to their country. Achieving peace, stability and prosperity in Afghanistan requires their full and equal participation, at all levels and in all areas.

The Taliban are systematically restricting the human rights of all Afghan people, and in particular the rights of women and girls.

Australia is concerned that increasing Taliban restrictions – such as a strict hijab mandate, male guardian travel requirements, and excluding girls from secondary education – marginalise Afghan women from public life.

Afghan women and girls must be able to exercise their rights fully and freely, including to make their own decisions, lead in their communities, and be included in governing their country.

Taliban directives restricting these rights contradict their repeated assurances to respect and protect the human rights of all Afghans. We join others in the international community in urging the Taliban to honour their commitments.

We ask what additional steps the international community can take to encourage the Taliban to guarantee women and girls’ education and full participation in society?

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