Al Jazeera, 2021

The Voice of Afghan Diaspora Women must be heard

A dialogue between Afghan Diaspora Women and MEPs to address the situation in Afghanistan and the EU's role moving onwards.

Public Online Event: The Voice of Afghan Diaspora Women must be heard

When: 27.10.2021 (Wednesday) 

Time: 16:00-17:30 (CET)
Moderator: MEP Dr. Dietmar Köster 
Language: English with simultaneous interpretation to Dari
Where: Online on Zoom
Participants: Afghan diaspora organizations and EU officials

As Afghan women hold their breath in fear of what a future under Taliban ruling will mean, the Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Cornelia Ernst, MEP Dr. Dietmar Köster, MEP Tineke Strik, as well as Rahela Sidiqi Founder and Director of Governance and Reform Advisory – Aid (GRAaid) & Rahela Trust for Afghan Women’s Education and the Danish Refugee Council's Diaspora Programme (DRC DP) organize a virtual public discussion between Afghan diaspora women and Members of the European Parliament.

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Purpose of the event 

After 20 years of war and instability, the Taliban took control of Kabul on 15 August 2021. This substantial change has created increasing uncertainty for Afghans inside Afghanistan, in particular for women and girls with fear of losing the gains from the last 20 years.   

This discussion will provide space for testimonies and discussion with Afghan women on the situation in Afghanistan covering protection risks for women and girls; access to education and work; and specific needs for the humanitarian response. The meeting also aims to outline the response of the European Union, in particular the Parliament, to date and share concrete suggestions for future engagement.  

The event will provide Afghan diaspora women a platform to explain the situation on the ground from their point of view, voice their concerns and start a dialogue with key European Union stakeholders on how to protect girls and women in Afghanistan as well as those seeking protection outside of Afghanistan.  

The event aims to discuss how women and girls at risks can access protection outside of Afghanistan, how Europe can use its political leverage to ensure that the gains from the last 20 years are preserved to ensure safety, access to education and work for women in Afghanistan, and finally how to respond to the humanitarian crisis with the specific needs of women and girls in mind.