Amnesty International, with other human rights organizations, on Tuesday, urged the Government of Afghanistan to end harassment, intimidation, threats, and attacks against human rights defenders, journalists, activists, and media workers in the country.
These human rights organizations have asked the Afghan government, international stakeholders, and other facilitators of the ongoing peace process to take responsibility through their engagement and conduct in the country.
Various organizations have raised a caution upon the increase in violent attacks against human rights defenders.
In a joint letter, these organizations collectively call for an immediate and effective protection mechanism for defenders of human rights in Afghanistan.
The undersigned international human rights organizations said from September 2020 until May 2021, about 17 human rights defenders have been killed. This count includes nine journalists and is based on information gathered by the Afghan Human Rights Defenders Committee (AHRDC).
As per the details, nine of those killed were in the initial five months of this year. During this period, more than 200 human rights defenders and journalists reported receiving serious threats. It is pertinent to mention that this count is only of the people who reported their scares to the AHRDC and the Afghanistan Journalists Safety Committee.
A report of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) said that 65 media practitioners and human rights workers have been killed since 2018. No perpetrators have been held to account in most of these cases.
These attacks, as per the report, are aimed to silence peaceful dissent and those working for human rights to be upheld. The report links the timing of escalating attacks with the ongoing peace talks between the Government of Afghanistan, the Taliban, and the United States. The international community is urged to ensure humanitarian and