*** ----> ‘We are like slaves’, Afghan girl tells UN rights council | THE DAILY TRIBUNE | KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN

‘We are like slaves’, Afghan girl tells UN rights council

AFP | Geneva, Switzerland 

The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com

A young girl living in Taliban-run Afghanistan provided the top UN rights body with rare, anonymous testimony from within the country on Tuesday describing a life of “slavery”.

Filmed from behind in front of a white screen, with only the black outline of her Muslim head covering visible, the girl identified as Laila recalled what it was like before the movement swept back to power nearly three years ago.

Before that, women and girls “were free”, she said in the recording as the body met in Geneva to address the rights situation in the country.

“But now we are not free. We are like slaves.” Afghan girls are like “birds with broken wings”, she said.

“They are still trying to fly, and they still want to find an opportunity and fly as... high as they can.”

Since returning to power in 2021, the Taliban government has used its austere interpretation of Islam to erode women’s rights, banning them from secondary schools, universities and some public spaces such as parks, and refusing to let them carry out certain types of work.

The UN has described the situation in the country as “gender-based apartheid”.

The Taliban authorities have responded to international criticism by saying Afghanistan’s laws follow Islam and guarantee all citizens’ rights under sharia.

Last year, the executive director of UN Women Sima Bahous warned that the situation was so dire that suicidal thoughts were “everywhere” for women in Afghanistan.