Ireland joins global criticism over exclusion of Afghan women from Doha meeting

Ireland has joined international criticism over the exclusion of Afghan women from the third Doha meeting, hosted by the United Nations and attended by representatives from 25 countries, including a Taliban delegation.

The meeting took place on June 30 and July 1.

A spokesperson for Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs stated that while Ireland did not participate in the Doha meeting, it has “consistently spoken out about the importance of women’s participation at all levels of peace processes, including those led by the U.N.”

“The EU and its member states, including Ireland, along with like-minded partners, advocated for the inclusion of representatives of Afghan civil society, including women’s organizations, in all discussions,” the spokesperson said, as quoted by the Irish Times.

The spokesperson added, “Gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls remain a key priority for Ireland’s foreign policy. Ireland has consistently stood in solidarity with women and girls in Afghanistan and continues to advocate on their behalf in international forums.”

The meeting faced harsh criticism from women’s rights groups within and outside Afghanistan. Canada also criticized the absence of women and the lack of discussions on human rights during the meeting.