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Women’s role in peace process vital, says Ghani

Women’s role in peace process vital, says Ghani

May 15, 2017 - 16:42

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): President Ashraf Ghani has said womeninfo-icon could play a vital role in ensuring peace and a real peace would come when basic rights of Afghan men and women were protected.

Inaugurating a fourth three-day symposium “Afghan Women, the messengers of peace” in capital Kabul, Ghani said peace and stability was the most important demand and requirement of the Afghan people.

Pointing to the peace agreement with the Hezb-i-Islamiinfo-icon Afghanistaninfo-icon (HIA), the president said a strong will and going by the Constitution were preconditions for peace talks.

“It is an Islamic principle that no achievements can be made when the will is weak, realistically understanding and rightly diagnosing the situation are other preconditions for achieving peace,” the president added.

“Even if there is a right intent, will and understanding of the situation, the peace process would not succeed when it is in conflict with the Constitution,” he said.

“We have a strong commitment that we can reach peace through constitutional framework and protection of people’s rights, fortunately we are followers of a religion that does not divide humans as first and second class, both men and women are equal and of same grade in human dignity,” Ghani added.

The president said Muslim women had an active role in social, economic and political areas in the Islamic history and mothers of former Afghanistan kings Mirwais and Ahmad Shah were educated.

But he regretted some Afghans currently did not allow their daughters to get educationinfo-icon. The Afghan women have gained significant development in political, social, economic and cultural areas over the past 15 years and reasons behind the promotion was the rights and opportunities given to them by the constitution, Ghani said.

The number of women deprived of education is three times higher than men in Afghanistan and the main reason is the imposed war on Afghanistan, he said. He added most of the victims of the ongoing conflict in the country were women.

Calling women’s role in peace and stability as important, the president said, “Women of our country were real supporters of peace in the past centuries. We should hear their views about peace in the current time too.”

Ghani asked women taking part in the symposium to share their suggestions about peace with the government and the people.

“I believe this symposium will give strength to the peace process and peace culture and will send a clear message to the nation and the government,” he said.

Acting Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani said that the symposium was part of a series of symposiums organized in Washington, the capital of United States, Oslo, the capital of Norway and Kabul.

He said the main goal of the symposium was to promote women’s participation in different areas. “The aim of this symposium is to promote women’s participation in the peace process, he said.”

He said the government had taken many steps for women’s empowerment over the past 17 years, but the gender needed more and continued support.

Rabbani said women’s role in elimination of violence, promoting peace, friendship and educating a generation for a bright future was vital.

UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan, Tadamichi Yamamoto, said, “The United Nations stands in solidarity with Afghan women, and supports all efforts to ensure that women’s involvement in peace is meaningful.”

“This three-day symposium is an excellent opportunity for you to share your experiences, discuss your visions for the future and strategize about how women must play a leading role in building peace in Afghanistan.” said Yamamoto, who is also the UNAMA’s special representative for Afghanistan.

He said experiences about peace from around the worldinfo-icon showed the women should be involved in peace efforts from the outset.

“As half the population, the empowerment of Afghan women and girls is essential to ensure their full participation in the political and social life, and help realize Afghanistan’s full potential.”

“Women and girls also have a variety of roles in the home, community and nation that are critical to the promotion of peace”, he said.

The Afghan government has pledged to increase the presence of women in government institutions to 30 per cent by 2020. “We hope that this goal will be achieved,” Yamamoto added.

The UN in Afghanistan has been supporting the government’s efforts to strengthen implementation of women, peace and security commitments in compliance with Afghanistan’s international obligations, and Afghanistan’s National Action Plan on UN Security Council Resolution 1325, he added.


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