BENELUX statement Interactive Dialogue on the OHCHR report on Afghanistan

Delivered by H.E. Lars Tummers, Ambassador, Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Representation of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Thank you Mr. President,

I deliver this statement on behalf of the BENELUX countries, Belgium, Luxembourg and my own country, the Kingdom of the Netherlands. 

We align ourselves with the EU statement and thank the High Commissioner and his team for presenting the alarming report on the human rights situation in Afghanistan.

Our countries continue to be deeply concerned about the absence of rule of law and accountability in Afghanistan. The lack of a coherent and predictable legal system in Afghanistan leads to a climate of legal uncertainty and fear among Afghans, further destabilizing an already fragile situation.

Specifically, we are concerned about the exclusion of women from accessing legal aid, or to practice law, which further excludes women from Afghan society and has immense consequences for the safety of women and girls.

We continue to call upon the Taliban to immediately reverse decisions limiting the human rights of Afghans, and to adhere to the international human rights laws and conventions to which Afghanistan is a state party.

We ask the High Commissioner, what are the opportunities to strengthen accountability locally in Afghanistan, specifically for women and girls, and how can these be supported by the international community?

I thank you.