Speaking Of Asia

The urgent need to protect Afghanistan's women

More pressure needs to be asserted on the Taliban. Three countries - Pakistan, China and the United States - have unique levers that should be used.

Nearly a quarter century ago, when she was a counsellor in the office of then United States Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Ms Wendy Sherman, together with her boss, used their gender to gain entry into the women's section of the refugee camps for displaced Afghans in the Pakistani border city of Peshawar.

The tales the two heard from the women housed there were horrendous, including of rape. One young woman had escaped the Taliban - which had recently seized power in Afghanistan - by jumping out of an upstairs window.

Please or to continue reading the full article.

Get unlimited access to all stories at $0.99/month
  • Latest headlines and exclusive stories
  • In-depth analyses and award-winning multimedia content
  • Get access to all with our no-contract promotional package at only $0.99/month for the first 3 months*

*Terms and conditions apply.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 14, 2021, with the headline 'The urgent need to protect Afghanistan's women'. Subscribe