UN Security Council to discuss Taliban’s ban of UN female staff

The UN Security Council (UNSC) is set to convene a meeting on Thursday to discuss the Taliban’s recent decision of banning women from working with the UN offices in Afghanistan, according to the United States Permanent Representative to the United Nations Thomas Greenfield.

Describing the Taliban’s ban as “repugnant” decision, the United States UN ambassador noted that women were integral part of humanitarian operations, including in Afghanistan.

On Tuesday the UN headquarter in New York confirmed that it asked thousands of its male and female employees in Afghanistan to stay home and not come to work after the organization officials received “word of an order” from the Taliban which banned its female staffers from work.

The next day, the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) officially confirmed in a statement it was notified by the Taliban authorities that no Afghan woman was permitted to work with the UN offices across Afghanistan.

Hours later, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned that this latest Taliban’s ban was “intolerable” and called on the group to immediately revoke this ban and all other measures restricting women’s and girls’ rights to work, education, and freedom of movement.

In its statement, the UNAMA asserted that the organization’s local female staff “must be allowed to move freely throughout Afghanistan” adding that its female staff could not receive instructions on the performance of their duties from any authority.

“It constitutes an unparalleled violation of women’s rights, a flagrant breach of humanitarian principles, and a breach of international rules on the privileges and immunities of the United Nations, including those extended to all UN personnel,” the UN mission said about the Taliban’s recent ban.

The statement quoted its head, Roza Otunbayeva, as saying “In the history of the United Nations, no other regime has ever tried to ban women from working for the Organization just because they are women” warning about grave consequences of the Taliban’s bans for all Afghans.

Despite widely strong reactions continue to come against the Taliban’s ban of UN female staff, the group’s officials have so far remained tight-lipped regarding it.