Afghan, Iranian women launch campaign on recognition of ‘gender apartheid’

Women’s protest in Kabul. File photo.

A group of women from Afghanistan and Iran has launched the campaign “End Gender Apartheid,” calling for it to be recognized as a crime against humanity.

These activists are urging countries to confront and end the “gender apartheid” enforced by the Iranian government and the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.

The campaign began on social media on Tuesday, June 18, with activists sharing their photos using the hashtag “End Gender Apartheid.”

They are also calling on nations to classify gender apartheid as a crime against humanity.

In their messages, the women’s rights activists express solidarity with women in Afghanistan and Iran and encourage countries to criminalize gender apartheid.

They are urging nations to respond to the “oppression and discrimination” against women in Afghanistan and Iran.

Participants in the campaign aim to have gender apartheid included in the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, which is currently under review by the U.N. Legal Committee.

Many prominent women’s rights figures and female artists from Iran and Afghanistan, including Masih Alinejad, Nazanin Boniadi, Habiba Sarabi, Mitra Mehran, Yalda Royan, Fawzia Koofi, Shirin Ebadi, Golshifteh Farahani, Azita Ghanizada, and Banafsha Yaqubi, along with dozens of women’s rights activists from both countries and around the world, have joined the campaign.

Simultaneously, Richard Bennett, the U.N. Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, presented details of his latest report at the 56th session of the Human Rights Council on Tuesday, June 18.

Bennett emphasized the issue of “gender apartheid” in Afghanistan, stating that violence against Afghan women is pervasive and severe. He highlighted the systematic and institutionalized discrimination in the country and the exclusion of women by the Taliban, urging it to shock the conscience of humanity.