Second Conference of Afghan Women (in areas of Rights, Education and Social Issues)
Kabul, 7 – 9 June, 2002
Organized by Negar-Support of Women of Afghanistan
On June 7, 8 and 9, 2002 Negar organized in Kabul its Second Conference of Afghan Women. Approximately one thousand Afghan women from among intellectuals, women’s organizations, educational institutions, legal concerns and governmental offices from all over Afghanistan, and forty non-Afghan women from four continents including the United Nations’ representative, at their own expense, attended the conference.
Important personalities from various areas of expertise addressed the audience. They included Mr. Ismail Qasemyar, President of the Special Independent Commission of the Emergency Loya Jirga, Claire Nancy, Special Representative of European Parliament Deputy Genevieve Fraisse (President of the Parliament’s Women’s Rights Committee), Constance Borde representing the American Women’s Caucus, Annie Sugier representing the women activists of the world, and notably the ardent supporter of Afghan women’s rights and Deputy of the European Parliament, Emma Bonino. Sima Samar, Minister of Women’s Affairs, gave the closing address and spoke of the need for more such effective and successful gatherings.
During three days the Afghan participants discussed the needs and problems of Afghan women, in three commissions of Rights, Education and Social Issues (which were originally culled from and decided upon in a preliminary seminar of 350 women, held by Negar in Kabul in January 2002). The participants then selected five priority points that must be part of any action plan concerning Afghanistan. Finally, the five selections were reviewed and discussed in the general assembly. The resolution that follows is the final decision of the general assembly of the Conference.
I. Rights Commission
We Afghan women reiterate that the articles of the Declaration of the Essential Rights of Afghan Women (drafted and singed in the First Conference of Afghan Women in Dushanbe, Tajikistan in June 2000) enter into the next Constitution.
We commit ourselves to an active campaign to continue to collect support for the said Declaration, which represents the popular will of the Afghan people.
As a result of the suppression of our rights especially the right to work, by the Taliban, we have suffered great economic and financial losses and we ask the Afghan and international community to help us to receive reparations.
We ask that the participation of Afghan women in all the political, economic, social and cultural spheres take place with significant representation in a just and democratic manner and without discrimination.
We are certain that training and information in rights and laws are one of the most important needs of Afghans and must take place all over Afghanistan.
II. Education Commission
We Afghan women want the reconstruction and rehabilitation of all classrooms and schools, with proper equipment and drinkable water.
We want the creation and expansion of catch-up courses for grades 1 – 12, including English and computer classes.
Creation and expansion of schools for married women and girls beyond school age in all of Afghanistan.
Expansion of the literacy program for all of Afghanistan.
Establishment of an infirmary in each school.
III. Social Commission
Priority for hygiene, collection and treatment of waste in the populated areas, and hygiene education.
Recognition and rehabilitation of those women victimized or forced into marriage by the Taliban and Al Qaeda who now face an uncertain and stigmatized future, including addicts and mothers who are heads of households.
Establishment of maternity and mother and child dispensaries in all of Afghanistan.
Childcare including day care, play areas and sports grounds.
Expansion and development of arts and crafts projects, such as sewing, embroidery, carpet making, leather work, including language and computer courses.
Resolution Contact and Information:
Shoukria Haidar, Negar-Soutien aux Femmes d’Afghanistan
BP 10, 25770 Franois, France
Tel.: 0033 381 590439
0033 662 180439
0033 148 376256
Nasrine Gross, Kabul