UN Deputy Secretary-General in Kabul for talks with Taliban

KABUL, Afghanistan — Rosemary DiCarlo, the UN Deputy Secretary-General for Political Affairs, arrived in Kabul Saturday and is engaged in talks with Taliban officials, sources confirmed to Amu.

Sources indicate that the high-ranking UN official’s visit is focused on discussions regarding the upcoming third Doha meeting with Taliban representatives.

The third meeting on Afghanistan, considered significant, is scheduled to take place in Doha in late June. One of the critical issues is the appointment of a UN special representative for Afghanistan, a move the Taliban oppose.

While the UN is working to invite the Taliban to this meeting, Human Rights Watch urges the organization to first compel the Taliban to respect human rights.

Heather Barr, the associate director of the Women’s Rights Division at Human Rights Watch, emphasized in a chat with Amu that the Taliban continue to tighten restrictions on women and girls in Afghanistan.

Several Afghan women and girls also called on the UN to prioritize their rights and freedoms.

Shukria, a Kabul resident, said, “Girls are left without a future; we are without education. Women who used to work in schools are now confined to their homes, and girls cannot attend school.” Hamida, another Kabul resident, added, “This Doha meeting must yield results. We women have no work, and our daughters are deprived of education and jobs. We want their futures to be secured.”

Human rights and women’s rights activists criticize efforts by some countries to engage with the Taliban. Sabira Akbari, a human rights activist, stated, “We expect the international community to stop aiding the Taliban, impose sanctions on them, and prevent Taliban delegations from traveling to their countries. Instead of engaging with the Taliban, efforts should be made to ensure they are not recognized.”

“I hope the international community, led by the UN, will make a firm and decisive stance against the Taliban. The crisis in Afghanistan has persisted for nearly three years, and the Afghan people no longer want to be victims of the international community’s agendas, which include maintaining the Taliban’s presence,” said Fawzia Wahdat, a women’s rights activist.

Concerns about the Taliban’s restrictions on women and girls come as the Taliban has issued over 50 decrees since taking power, limiting or outright denying the rights and freedoms of women and girls.