Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : UN HRC54 – High Commissioner’s report on Afghanistan [September 2023]

The press release issued by the Foreign Office on 12 September 2023.

Interactive Dialogue on the High Commissioner’s report on Afghanistan, as delivered by UK Human Rights Ambassador, Rita French.

Thank you, Mr President.

High Commissioner,

Let me begin by echoing your opening remarks: human rights across Afghanistan are in a state of collapse.

The Taliban’s draconian measures in education, in health, in employment, have invoked further violations of women’s and girls’ rights including women being beaten, harassed or ordered to return home if exercising their freedom of movement.

We continue to stand in solidarity with Afghan women and girls courageously fighting for their rights in the face of the Taliban’s shocking tactics to erase them from all spheres of public life. The international community must not remain silent. This Council must not be silent. And as the Afghan youth orchestra so powerfully demonstrated last night, Afghans will not remain silent.

The UK condemns the numerous documented human rights violations against former government officials and members of the security forces since August 2021. We call again on the Taliban to honour the amnesty it previously announced and to investigate the allegations of targeted killings and disappearances.

High Commissioner,

In your view, how can we ensure the implementation of your recommendations, including for the Taliban to promptly rescind discriminatory edicts and decrees which curtail women’s and girls’ human rights?

Thank you.