Afghanistan: Kabul Observers Downbeat on London Conference

   •    January 28, 2010

This article was originally published by EurasiaNet.

Observers and humanitarian aid workers in Kabul are giving lackluster reviews to the London conference on Afghanistan.

For many in Kabul, the most divisive issue discussed in London was the peace and reconciliation plan. Women’s groups and human rights activists offered the most vocal criticism of what they perceived as an attempt to forgive and forget the Taliban’s past behavior.

Prior to the conference, a meeting of Afghan women facilitated by UNIFEM and the Institute of Inclusive Security demanded guaranteed protection of women’s rights in all reconciliation initiatives. The group expressed concern at reconciliation proposals and the lack of consultation and consideration of the needs and views of civilians. A statement emphasized that there should be “no compromise on human rights” and that any reintegration should be based on “justice and respect for human rights.”

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