Women should be part of Afghanistan peace process, feels actor-humanitarian Angelina Jolie
United Nations, March 30: Academy Award-winning actor and humanitarian Angelina Jolie has expressed disappointment over the absence of women in the talks that are currently underway to give peace a chance in the war-ravaged state of Afghanistan. Speaking before ministers and diplomats in the United Nations on Friday, March 29, the 43-year-old pushed for the inclusion of women in the peace talks.
Peace talks started between the Taliban and US late last year and the latest rounds concluded earlier this month. However, the women folk is apprehensive that it could lose their freedom which found some prominence after the US-backed Afghan forces overthrew the Taliban in 2001 and allege that its voice is getting sidelined, Afghanistan's TOLO News reported.
"In Afghanistan thousands of women have recently come together in public risking their lives to ask that their rights and the rights of their children be guaranteed in peace negotiations that so far they have been allow no part of," Jolie, a former UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency) Goodwill Ambassador, said during a ministerial meeting on UN peacekeeping, the report added.
She said the international community's response on the issue is alarming. "There can be no peace or stability in Afghanistan or anywhere else in the world that involves trading away the rights of women," said the special envoy for the UNHCR.
On Thursday, March 28, the US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction cited the Taliban as saying that though might consider more liberal policies towards women, the chief negotiator has said that the constitution that protects women's rights creates an obstacle on way of peace.