What is the status of women’s human rights in Afghanistan?

Event Date: Wednesday March 30, 2022
Time: 12:00-1:00 pm

The Herbert C. Kelman Seminar on International Conflict Analysis and Resolution presents:

What is the status of women’s human rights in Afghanistan?

A virtual talk with:

Sima Samar

Dr. Sima Samar
Visiting Scholar, Carr Center for Human Rights,
Kennedy School of Government

Wednesday, March 30, 2022
12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, ET (US and Canada)
Free and open to the public.

About the talk:

This seminar will provide a short background on the human rights achievements of the last 20 years and what can be done given the current situation in Afghanistan. The focus will be on the human rights of Afghan women, particularly middle and high school age girls. The case will be made for why it is important for the international community not to abandon Afghanistan.

About the speaker:

Dr. Sima Samar is a Nobel Peace Prize nominee, renowned human rights advocate and an identified global influential female figure. Dr. Samar has dedicated her life to public service, humanitarian work and women’s empowerment. Since 2002 she has been the Chairperson of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) which holds human rights violators accountable and sets the human rights agenda in Afghanistan. Alongside this, Dr. Samar is the Chairperson of the Commission for the Prevention of Torture and was the Chairperson of Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions (APF).

Prior to her appointment as the chair of AIHRC, she was the Vice President of the Interim Administration of Afghanistan and the first Minister of Women’s Affairs. Dr. Samar served as the United Nation’s Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Sudan between 2005 and 2009 and has been appointed as a member of the United Nation’s Secretary-General’s High-Level Advisory Board on Mediation. She also served as a member of High Level Panel for Internal Displacement.

Dr. Samar is also the founder of the NGO Shuhada which operates 55 schools for girls and boys in Afghanistan, and three schools in Quetta, Pakistan for Afghan refugees. In addition, Shuhada operates 12 clinics and three hospitals in Afghanistan and one hospital in Quetta for refugees, dedicated to providing education and healthcare, particularly focusing on women and girls. Shuhada continues to build schools in remote parts of the country where no other organizations go.

Dr. Samar has continuously advocated for the world’s under-represented and marginalized groups such as women, children and minorities, with the firm belief that respect for human rights and human dignity, equality between the people and access to justice will change the reality on the ground and reduce the conflicts.

About the Herbert C. Kelman Seminar Series:

The Herbert C. Kelman Seminar on International Conflict Analysis and Resolution series is sponsored by the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, The Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, and Boston area members of the Alliance for Peacebuilding. The seminar considers ways to strengthen the capacity to prevent, resolve, and transform ethnonational conflicts.

 For more information on the Kelman Seminar Series, contact Donna Hicks at dhicks@wcfia.harvard.edu.


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