Year 2014 is historic for Afghanistan and it is people. The Afghan citizens through practice of democracy will once again have a new elected government. This in decades will be transfer of political power from one president to the other in a peaceful and democratic way. At the same time, withdrawal of North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) troops will be completed by end of the year.
It is crucial time not only for Afghans but to the world and the region to ensure sustainable peace, democracy and justice beyond 2014 where people can enjoy practice of democracy, employment, security and inclusive participation.
After the 2012 Chicago NATO Summit, the 2014 NATO Summit will be hosted by the United Kingdom on September 2014. One of the focuses of NATO Summit will be Afghanistan beyond 2014 after withdrawal of international troops is completed.
Afghan Women’s Network (AWN) is an umbrella organisation of 120 women-led civil society NGOs and over 3,000 individual women members. AWN have played a critical role in discussing women’s rights agenda at the policy level with the Afghan government and international community since registered as network in 2001. Prior to the NATO Summit UK, AWN conducted a desk review to identify key challenges and recommendations that have been presented to the Afghan government and international community regarding Afghan women security and protection as 50% citizens of the country as well as women’s participation and decision making role within the Afghan National Security Forces (Army, Police and National Department of Security).
AWN also consulted over 500 women through one day consultation conferences in Eight Zones on 17 August 2014 and a National conference in Kabul on 27 August 2014 to discuss women’s concerns and recommendations and concrete measures to ensure women’s political participation, increasing their decision making role, safe mobility, needed protection and security measures beyond the year 2014.
Hasina Safi,Director, Afghan Women’s Network (AWN)