Afghan women have been demanding to be included in peace negotiations with the U.S. since they began. We should have listened to them.
“No one has suffered more at the hands of the Taliban than the women of Afghanistan,” Melanne Verveer—executive director of the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security and a former U.S. ambassador for Global Women’s Issues—explains in a new op-ed in USA Today.
“I lost everything in one day,” Layla, who fled Saudi Arabia, says a few months later outside a refugee settlement in Germany. Her voice trembles with still-raw fear. “But only one thing mattered: For the first time, I was free.”
“Inclusivity means real representation: not just elites getting a seat at the table. Being at the table is a means, not the end.”
The Trump administration’s approach to foreign relations with Iran has worsened existing humanitarian crises for women and created new ones. But women in Iran will continue to fight back.
It can be hard to see progress in the fight for Saudi women’s rights. But we see the cracks in this systemic oppression more than ever before.
Feminist advocates last week met with leading lawmakers on Capitol Hill to amplify calls for an equitable peace process in Afghanistan being made by women on the ground.
Notably absent from recent headlines about the potential withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan is talk of the dangerous consequences such a decision could have for women and girls in the region—and the lack of women’s representation in the ongoing “peace talks” between the Trump administration and leaders of the Taliban.
Imagine an app that tracks your movement wherever you go. Imagine that it sends notifications to a male member in your family whenever you check in at an airport. Imagine that it gives them the power, in just a few clicks on their own smartphone, of banning you from traveling altogether. This app is called Absher. You can find it at the Google Marketplace and in the Apple App Store.
Boys and girls are both missing out on education in unacceptable numbers in Pakistan—22.5 million in total—but girls are affected most. Sister Zeph was one of them, and she was determined to create a solution, no matter what it took.