Women in Afghanistan: a human rights catastrophe

Index Number: ASA 11/003/1995

This report is published as part of AI’s 1995 campaign to protect and promote women’s human rights. The fighting which has devastated Afghanistan in the past three years has shattered the lives of thousands of women and children. Thousands have been killed or wounded in artillery attacks, apparently aimed deliberately at residential areas. Armed groups have massacred women in their homes or brutally raped and beaten them. Young women and girls have been abducted and raped, taken as wives by commanders of various Mujahideen factions or sold into prostitution. Many women have “disappeared” and there have been cases of women stoned to death. Hundreds of thousands of women and children have fled in terror, only to suffer further abuses during their flight or in refugee camps. Women associated with independent women’s organization are harassed and threatened by Mujahideen groups. AI is calling on the authorities in Kabul, the warring political groups and the international community to take urgent steps to safeguard women’s human rights in Afghanistan.

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