Archives for December 2017

Over 3500 women faced violence in 2017: AIHRC

A recent report by the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) shows that 3,778 incidents of violence against women took place in the last ten months of 2017.

The report shows no decline in the number of cases of violent incidents and point towards the existence of a culture of impunity in cases of brutality against women.

The AIHRC on Saturday disseminated details on the cases of violence against women, and recorded 1,351 incidents of physical torture, 1,093 incidents of verbal incidents and 176 incidents of sexual violence.The remaining cases comprised of other types of tortures and violence against women.

Either the victims themselves or their relatives registered thecases at the IHRC regional offices.

According to the report, out ofthe 1,351 incidents of physical violence, 1,003 were cases of torture, 19 of immolation, 4 of limb loss, 54 incidents of injuries and 22 incidents of forces work.

AIHRC officials said that the number of cases of violent incidents registered at their regional offices resembled no significant change in comparison to the numbers of cases last year.

Addressing the reporters on the occasion of International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, AIHRC Chief Sema Samar expressed her concern over the culture of impunity that exists in cases of violence against women. 

She also saidthat 231 incidents of murders of women were registered separately from the above incidents,including 120 incidents of honour killing carried out by thevictim’s family members, including their fathers and husbands.

In 6 of the cases the women were executed either by armed militantsor on the orders of kangaroo courts. Some 105 cases of women murders were also attributed to unidentified armed men.

She added that over 50 of these alleged murderers were even arrested and their cases registered and referred to the Attorney General Office for investigation, but unfortunately most of them had managed to flee.

The AIHRC also released a separate report on violence and discrimination against women within the ranks of the security forces.

For the report, 651 women officials amongst the ranks of the security forces,including579 policewomen, 60 army women personnel and 12 women employees were interviewed regarding the violence and discrimination against women.

About 49 percent of the women officials interviewed complained against the non-existence of equal promotion opportunities, 65 percent complained against the lack of provision of equal rights, and 52 percent complained against a lack of due  attention to the decision making process in matters related to their duties.

She said that “of the total interviewed women, 86 complained against the existence of somehow discrimination and harassment which included, touching, complimenting the physic, clothes and blinking.”

SOURCE: llah Hamdard, Pajhwok Afghan News, Nov 25, 2017


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More than 70 Afghan mothers to receive obstetric fistula surgical repairs

With the technical and financial support of UNFPA, Ministry of Public Health of Afghanistan established its second obstetric fistula treatment centre in Herat regional hospital. UNFPA provided trainings for 9 health workers including surgeons, midwives and an anaesthesiologist. In this centre, 27 patients with pelvic floor disorder including obstetric fistula have received successful repair surgeries.

Obstetric Fistula is a childbirth injury, a hole or fistula from the urinary bladder and/or the rectum to the birth canal. Mainly caused by prolonged obstructed labor, the condition devastates lives of women, leaving them with constant leakage of urine or faeces or both.

Three per cent of women in Afghanistan have had symptoms of fistula, both in urban (4 per cent) and rural areas (3 per cent), however, more than half of these mothers did not seek treatment, (Afghanistan Demographic and Health Survey, 2015).

“I think I am reborn after the surgery. I am going to start a new and clean life when I go home”, said Jamila, 30, mother of one girl got a surgical repair for obstetric fistula at the UNFPA supported Obstetric Fistula Treatment Centre in Herat.

At the fistula treatment centre in Malalai Maternity Hospital an average of 5 patients receive repair surgeries every month.

The condition can be simple and repairable with one surgery session or it can be very complicated and require multiple surgeries to heal. However, the good news is that the condition is repairable and with UNFPA support there are 2 treatment centres in the Country, one in Kabul, at Malalai Maternity Hospital and another in Herat regional hospital. UNFPA plans to support the establishment of three more Fistula Treatment Centres in Nangarhar, Kandahar and Balkh.

UNFPA hired an international fistula surgeon in November 2017 to provide practical on the job training to surgeons from Herat and also Nangarhar regional hospital. Around 90 Afghan mothers living with obstetric fistula will be operated and rehabilitated to regain their normal lives.

The patients will receive repair surgeries during a period of more than one month. In the meantime, national surgeons will have enough time and clinical volume to acquire the delicate and very unique skill to repair obstetric fistula. They will observe and participate in the 90 surgical repair processes under the close mentorship and technical supervision of the international recognized surgeon.