United Nations condemns Taliban’s violent crackdown on protests

The United Nations condemned Taliban’s brutal response in curbing dissent after the group’s rapid take over of Afghanistan.

The Taliban killed at least four protesters during recent rallies, a UN report said.

Demonstrations have been taking place across Afghanistan since the fall of Kabul on 15 August 2021, demanding respect for women’s rights and greater freedoms.

Taliban have used batons, whips, and live ammunition against protesters. The Taliban ordered telecommunications companies to shut off mobile internet in Kabul on Wednesday.

“We call on the Taliban to immediately cease the use of force towards, and the arbitrary detention of, those exercising their right to peaceful assembly and the journalists covering the protests,” a spokeswoman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said in a press statement.

It is crucial the group listen to Afghan women and men on the streets “during this time of great uncertainty”, UN spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani said criticising the Taliban’s crackdown on demonstrations.

The press statement also noted the deaths of at least four people and the violent dispersal of demonstrators in recent weeks.

The UN report comes amid growing concerns about Afghanistan in the wake of the Taliban takeover.

On Friday, the UN’s World Food Programme said 93% of households in the country were not eating enough food. A drought has exacerbated supply problems, causing the loss of some 40% of the wheat crop.

UNESCO has already warned that the country faces a “generational catastrophe” in education, after two decades of progress for children, especially girls.