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UN supports women’s economic empowerment

UN supports women’s economic empowerment

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Mar 08, 2018 - 14:41

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The government’s programme to empower womeninfo-icon economically is a key step forward to opening more doors for their participation throughout societyinfo-icon, the United Nations in Afghanistaninfo-icon said on Thursday.

The UN said it encouraged the government to prioritise investment in educationinfo-icon, healthcare and business financing for women to reduce the gap between women and men and foster gender equality.

While marking International Women’s Day, the UN welcomed the government’s work to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in Afghanistan, including addressing the needs of urban and rural women and girls.

“Empowering urban and rural Afghan women is essential to reducing poverty, inequality, and violence against women,” said Toby Lanzer, acting head of the UN in Afghanistan, said in a statement.

“As last week’s second meeting of the Kabul Process highlighted, empowering women is also vital because real reconciliation hinges on women’s full and meaningful participation in the peace process.”

Gender equality was a human right and providing women and girls full access to education, healthcare, work and representation in political and economic spheres would fuel peace and sustainable development, the statement added.

The UN promised it would continue to foster gender equality and expand opportunities for urban and rural women in Afghanistan in 2018 and beyond.

 The theme for this year’s Women’s Day is ‘Time Is Now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women’s Lives.’ 

Afghanistan is 154th in the UN Gender Inequality Index. This year’s Women’s Day aims to draw attention to rural and urban women, who are left behind in many areas of development.

The worldinfo-icon body also hailed the entry into force on February 13, 2018 of a new penal code that contains several progressive provisions which, coupled with the new law on the elimination of harassment against women and children, improves the legal framework to protect women and girls at home or at work.

Afghanistan has pledged increasing the presence of women in government to 30 per cent by 2020. Yet, for now, women’s participation countrywide is below the target.

pr/mud

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