Those early Taliban were motivated by the suffering among the Afghan people, which they believed resulted from power struggles between Afghan groups not adhering to the moral code of Islam; in their religious schools they had been taught a belief in strict Islamic law. Pakistan, however, started to provide stronger military support to the Taliban.
Afghanistan Focus Page Since the U. Even in Kabul, however, many Afghan women still face constant threats to their personal security from other civilians or armed men belonging to various political factions.
Outside Kabul, the situation is one of acute general lawlessness and insecurity, as there is no ISAF presence and rival warlords control security conditions. In these areas, more than in Kabul, Afghan women continue to face serious threats to their physical safety, which denies them the opportunity to exercise their basic human rights and to participate fully in the rebuilding of their country.
The danger of physical assault is evident throughout northern Afghanistan, where ethnic Pashtuns have been specifically targeted for violence and harassment, including sexual violence. During February and MarchHuman Rights Watch documented cases of sexual violence against Pashtun women perpetrated by the three main ethnically based parties and their militias in the north.
Many women described how they had to fight off attackers or hide young female relatives out of fear of rape. However, general lawlessness and insecurity prevail. Although Pashtun women in the north have been specifically targeted for sexual violence, during February and MarchHuman Rights Watch researchers also gathered credible evidence of continuing politically or ethnically motivated sexual violence against women and girls of other ethnicities in Mazar.
Women in Mazar reported that they live under constant fears of physical assault and feel compelled to limit their movement, expression, and dress to avoid becoming targets of such violence by armed civilians or armed men aligned with the three main ethnically based parties.
Gender-specific violence has also taken on a potentially deadly dimension elsewhere. Women continue to be assaulted or abused for not adhering to former Taliban edicts that strictly controlled women's behavior, dress, expression, and movement.
In the second week of April, for example, Reuters reported an acid attack on a female teacher in Kandahar, after handwritten pamphlets were found circulating in the city warning men against sending their daughters to school or their wives to work.
A previously unknown militant group named Tanzeem al-Fatah Afghanistan "organization for the victory of Afghanistan" allegedly distributed the pamphlets.
Reportedly, Kandahar authorities arrested the accused man and thirty-seven others named by the man, five of whom were wearing Afghan military uniforms when apprehended.
Women felt that an official and public rescinding of all the Taliban edicts would go a long way in fostering their confidence in the government and in providing them with the legal ability to challenge gender-specific discriminatory attitudes. One consequence of this violence and insecurity is the continuing invisibility of women in many areas of public life.
If women cannot travel freely within their communities and country, they cannot participate in the rebuilding of Afghanistan during this critical period.
More broadly, women's representation and participation in the future government of Afghanistan could be undermined. On April 15, Afghanistan began the process of choosing its next government to replace the Interim Administration. One hundred and sixty women representatives are guaranteed seats in this process and others may be elected to non-reserved seats.
However, women face considerable challenges in this process, which include entrenched traditional attitudes in Afghanistan constraining women from participating in political processes, as well as security concerns inhibiting women from traveling to regional centers to cast ballots.
Strong cultural taboos inhibit discussion of such issues because women victims of rape or other sexual abuse in Afghanistan are perceived to have suffered grave dishonor in the eyes of their families and communities. Doctors and nurses, who had been directly responsible for carrying out physical examinations of women victims of rape or sexual abuse, or for registering victims' complaints, disclosed considerable information to Human Rights Watch on condition that their own identities, and those of the rape and abuse victims, would remain confidential.
In Mazar, women expressed fears of leaving the security of their homes. However, the security situation was so acute that women who had been raped or otherwise sexually abused had typically been attacked in their own homes. Some had been gang-raped.
The identities of the perpetrators were difficult or impossible to discern, even to the victims. Women described attackers as men wearing traditional clothes loose trousers and a long shirtor a military-style camouflage jacket, sometimes carrying arms, and often with a turban pulled across their faces.
Sometimes, women could identify their attackers' ethnicity by their facial features or speech, and so the armed political group to which they probably belonged. Human Rights Watch was unable to determine what, if any, measures the local authorities in Mazar and its surrounding areas took to prevent rape and other forms of sexual violence.
However, in numerous interviews with women and men familiar with cases of sexual violence in Mazar, Human Rights Watch was told that even when security authorities became aware that women and girls were attacked, there was no evidence that perpetrators were appropriately punished.
An example of this impunity was demonstrated by reference to a case that a number of residents of Mazar were familiar with.
In Decemberfourteen armed Hazara men from the Wahdat 12 party raped three sisters, ages twelve- fourteen- and twenty-years-old from Char Rahi Haji Ayub, a neighborhood in Mazar. Security forces under the command of Majid Rouzi 13 arrested four men who were released a few days later.
One day after this incident, General Dostum called on all his forces to "respect the honor of all women. They had been raped earlier that evening, according to the doctor and nurse who examined and questioned them. Two were ethnic Tajik girls and one an ethnic Tajik woman who were from different but neighboring families; the fourth was an ethnic Pashtun woman who was visiting one of the Tajik families at the time the attacks took place.
The attackers bound the hands and feet of the men of both families and locked them in basement rooms in their separate houses. Reportedly, security authorities in Mazar 15 who were alerted to the attack by the two families' neighbors were sent to investigate.
They took the two women and two girls to the city hospital for medical treatment, but a fifth victim, a fourteen-year-old girl, was left behind.
Her fate remains unclear. The doctor told Human Rights Watch:7- Whipping, beating and verbal abuse of women not clothed in accordance with Taliban rules, or of women unaccompanied by a mahram.
8- Whipping of women in public for having non-covered ankles. 9- Public stoning of women accused of having sex outside marriage. But the Taliban and other highly conservative insurgent groups still control some parts of Afghanistan, and violence and discrimination against women and girls continues - all over Afghanistan.
In it was named 'the most dangerous co untry' to be a woman. Following the Taliban’s ouster, Afghan women pushed diligently to expand their rights. They are now an essential part of the post-Taliban order and have played a significant role in.
Taliban restrictions became more severe after they took control of the capital. In February , religious police forced all women off the streets of Kabul, and issued new regulations ordering people to blacken their windows, so that women would not be visible from the outside. The US role in the raid was minimal.
Afghan villagers watch as US soldiers from the 82nd airborne's Bravo Company search a house for suspected Taliban and al-Qaida forces in the central part. "Under Taliban rule women have been stripped of their visibility, voice, and mobility" (Feminist Majority Foundation). In addition to restricting the advancement of women, the Taliban enforced laws that any windows of a woman's house that were visible to the public must be painted black.