Mona Juul on the Security Council press pulpit

Elected 10 and Incoming 5 Together For Women and Girls in Afghanistan

Statement delivered to the press by Permanent Representative Ambassador Mona Juul on behalf of the elected 10 and incoming 5 members of the Security Council.

Ten days ago marked one year since the Taliban decided to exclude girls from secondary education in Afghanistan.

We, the ten elected members and five incoming members of the Security Council, are calling on the Taliban to immediately reverse this decision.

The Taliban has made Afghanistan the only country in the entire world where girls are banned from attending secondary schools.

We call on the Taliban to respect the universal right to education, including for all women and girls. And to adhere to their commitments to reopen schools for all female students across the country without further delay.

The increased risks associated with disruption of education, particularly for girls, makes them more vulnerable to child labour and forced marriages.

It impacts their future economic opportunities and results in long-term obstacles for durable peace, security and development.

We encourage international efforts, including by regional organisations, to engage the Taliban on the situation of women and girls in Afghanistan.

We also urge the newly appointed head of the UN Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), SRSG Roza Otunbayeva, to engage with all relevant Afghan political actors and stakeholders, including relevant authorities, on this issue.

The international community has not – and will not – forget Afghan women and girls.