The Human Truth Foundation

Human Rights, Equality and Freedom in Afghanistan

By Vexen Crabtree 2018


Comments:
FB, LJ

#Afghanistan #equality #freedom #human_rights #politics #tolerance

Afghanistan is amongst the very worst places in the world at ensuring any human rights and freedoms, and it has severe cultural issues when it comes to tolerance and equality. Afghanistan does worse than average in its nominal commitment to Human Rights1, supporting press freedom2 and in LGBT equality3. It falls into the bottom 20 in opposing gender inequality4, eliminating modern slavery5 and in fighting corruption6. And finally, it is second-from-the-bottom in its Global Peace Index rating7. Kandahar province in particular is noteworthy for the use of truly horrible methods of torture and violence by police officials, and over half of the (many) cases of violence against journalists involve government officials and security staff8.


1. Politics and Freedom

#Afghanistan #burundi #corruption #eritrea #france #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #mass_media #peace #politics #slavery

Corruption (2012-2016)6
Pos.Higher is better
Avg Score6
1Denmark90.8
2New Zealand90.6
3Finland89.4
...
169Turkmenistan18.2
170Libya16.8
171Iraq16.6
172S. Sudan13.8
173Sudan12.2
174Afghanistan10.8
175Korea, N.08.8
176Somalia08.4
World Avg43.05
q=176.
Global Peace Index (2012)7
Pos.Lower is better7
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
...
150Central African Rep.2.87
151Korea, N.2.93
152Russia2.94
153Congo, DR3.07
154Iraq3.19
155Sudan3.19
156Afghanistan3.25
157Somalia3.39
World Avg2.02
q=157.
Nominal Commitment to HR (2009)1
Pos.Higher is better
Treaties1
1Argentina24
2Chile23
3Costa Rica23
...
128Zambia13
129Congo, (Brazzaville)13
130Ivory Coast13
131Afghanistan13
132Gambia13
133Equatorial Guinea13
134Antigua & Barbuda13
135Nepal13
World Avg15.1
q=194.

Press Freedom (2013)2
Pos.Lower is better2
1Finland638
2Netherlands648
3Norway652
...
124Algeria3654
125Ukraine3679
126Honduras3692
127Afghanistan3736
128Colombia3748
129Angola3780
130Libya3786
131Burundi3802
World Avg3249
q=178.

[2017] looked likely to surpass 2016 as the bloodiest since 2001 for Afghan journalists, [...] since January, the Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (AJSC) recorded 73 cases of violence and threats against journalists, including deaths, detentions, beatings, and intimidation. Government officials and security personnel were responsible for slightly more than half of the cases.

"World Report 2018" by Human Rights Watch (2018)8

Slavery (2018)5
Pos.Lower is better
% Victims5
1Japan0.03
2Canada0.05
3Taiwan0.05
...
160Pakistan1.68
161S. Sudan2.05
162Mauritania2.14
163Afghanistan2.22
164Central African Rep.2.23
165Burundi4.00
166Eritrea9.30
167Korea, N.10.46
World Avg0.65
q=167.

The taking of slaves has been an unwholesome feature of Human cultures since prehistory9. Private households and national endeavours have frequently been augmented with the use of slaves. The Egyptian and Roman empires both thrived on them for both purposes. Aside from labourers they are often abused sexually by their owners and their owners' friends10. The era of colonialism and the beginnings of globalisation changed nothing: the imprisonment and forced movements of labour continued to destroy many lives except that new justifications were invented based on Christian doctrine and the effort to convert non-Christians. By 1786 over 12 million slaves had been extracted from Africa and sent to colonial labour camps, with a truly atrocious condition of life11. But they were not the only ones to blame; in Africa internal nations such as the Asantes sold and bought tens of thousands of slaves12.

The abolition of the slave trade was a long and slow process. Until a relatively modern time, even philosophers, religious leaders and those concerned with ethics justified, or ignored, the problem of slavery13. The first abolitionists were always the slaves themselves. Their protests and rebellions caused the industry to become too expensive to continue. After that, it was the economic costs of maintain slave colonies that led the British to reject and then oppose the slave trade globally. Finally, the enlightenment-era thinkers of France encouraged moral and ethical thinking including the declaration of the inherent value of human life and human dignity14. A long-overdue wave of compassionate and conscientious movements swept across the West, eliminating public support for slavery, until the industries and churches that supported it had no choice but to back down.

'Modern slavery' includes forced labour (often of the under-age), debt bondage (especially generational), sexual slavery, chattel slavery and other forms of abuse, some of which can be surprisingly difficult to detect, but often target those fleeing from warzones and the vulnerable.15. Some industries (diamond, clothing, coal) from some countries (Burundi5, Eritrea5, Indonesia16) are a particular concern. The Walk Free Foundation, say that in 2016, 40.3 million people were living in modern slavery17.

An April report by UNAMA documented the highest levels of torture of conflict-related detainees in police custody since 2010. The report singled out the Kandahar police for torturing 91 percent of detainees by forcibly pumping water into their stomachs, crushing their testicles with clamps, suffocating them to the point of losing consciousness, and applying electric current to their genitals. In a significant sign of progress in curbing torture, the government in March enacted anti-torture legislation, as part of the new penal code. [...] In May, a report by the UN Committee Against Torture described "numerous and credible allegations" of severe human rights abuses, including torture and extrajudicial killings. [...] The government did not prosecute any senior officials accused of torture.

"World Report 2018" by Human Rights Watch (2018)8

2. Gender Equality

#Afghanistan #gender #misogyny #politics #women

Gender Inequality (2015)4
Pos.Lower is better4
1Switzerland0.04
2Denmark0.04
3Netherlands0.04
...
151Sierra Leone0.65
152Tonga0.66
153Congo, DR0.66
154Afghanistan0.67
155Ivory Coast0.67
156Mali0.69
157Chad0.69
158Niger0.70
World Avg0.36
q=159.
Year Women Can Vote18
Pos.Lower is better
Year18
1New Zealand1893
2Australia1902
3Finland1906
...
140Iran1963
141Kenya1963
142Fiji1963
143Afghanistan1963
144Equatorial Guinea1963
145Bahamas1963
146Sudan1964
147Libya1964
World Avg1930
q=189.

Gender inequality is not a necessary part of early human development. Although a separation of roles is almost universal due to different strengths between the genders, this does not have to mean that women are subdued, and, such patriarchialism is not universal in ancient history. Those cultures and peoples who shed, or never developed, the idea that mankind ought to dominate womankind, are better cultures and peoples than those who, even today, cling violently to those mores.

Afghanistan culture has a severe problem with gender equality, with male rights dominating those of women. Things need to change.

See:

3. LGBT Equality and Tolerance

#Afghanistan #equality #homosexuality #human_rights #intolerance #sexuality #tolerance

LGBT Equality (2017)3
Pos.Higher is better
Score3
1Netherlands103
2Belgium90
3Sweden86
...
154Malaysia-19
155Gambia-19
156Maldives-19
157Afghanistan-19
158Liberia-20
159Bhutan-20
160Burundi-20
161Nigeria-22
World Avg12.6
q=196.

Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) folk is rife across the world. Legal restrictions co-exist alongside social stigmatisation and physical violence19. LGBT tolerance and equal rights have been fought for country-by-country across the world, often against tightly entrenched cultural and religious opposition. Homosexual activity is outlawed in around 80 countries19. The Social & Moral LGBT Equality Index was created to compare countries and regions, granting points to each country for a variety of factors including how long gay sex has been criminalized and the extent of LGBT legal rights. Graded negative points are given for criminality of homosexuality, unequal ages of consent, legal punishments and for not signing international accords on LGBT tolerance. The signs in many developed countries are positive, and things are gradually improving. Europe is by far the least prejudiced region (Scandinavia in particular being exemplary). The Middle East and then Africa are the least morally developed, where cultural bias goes hand-in-hand with state intolerance, all too often including physical violence.

In Afghanistan, same-sex relations are punishable by 5 to 15 years in prison under a law that bans all sex between individuals not married to each other [which homosexuals cannot do].

"World Report 2018" by Human Rights Watch (2018)8

4. Afghanistan Overall National and Social Development

#Afghanistan #human_development

Social & Moral
Development Index
20
Pos.Higher is better
Points20
1Denmark84.2
2Sweden83.7
3Finland83.5
...
188Burundi35.6
189Marshall Islands35.4
190Equatorial Guinea34.3
191Afghanistan34.2
192Central African Rep.34.2
193Somalia32.9
194Congo, DR32.5
195Iraq32.2
196Chad31.3
World Avg54.1
q=198.

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life.

Current edition: 2018 Aug 15
http://www.humantruth.info/afghanistan_human_rights_and_freedom.html
Parent page: Afghanistan (Islamic State of Afghanistan)

All #tags used on this page - click for more:

#Afghanistan #burundi #corruption #equality #eritrea #france #freedom #gender #homosexuality #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #intolerance #mass_media #misogyny #peace #politics #sexuality #slavery #tolerance #women

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References: (What's this?)

Book Cover

Casely-Hayford, Gus
(2012) The Lost Kingdoms of Africa. Published by Bantram Press. A hardback book.

Crabtree, Vexen
(2018) "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" (2018). Accessed 2018 Aug 22.

Donnelly, Jack
(2013) Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice. 3rd edition. Published by Cornell University Press.

Human Rights Watch
(2018) World Report 2018. Covering the events of 2017.

Klein, Naomi
(2004) No Logo. Originally published 2000, HarperCollins, London, UK. A paperback book.

McCall, Andrew
(1979) The Medieval Underworld. 2004 edition. Published by Sutton Publishing. A paperback book.

Thomson, Oliver
(1993) A History of Sin. Published by Canongate Press. A hardback book.

United Nations. (UN)
(2017) Human Development Report. Published by the UN Development Programme. Data for 2015. Available on hdr.undp.org/.

Walk Free Foundation
(2018) Global Slavery Index. Published on www.walkfreefoundation.org/.

Footnotes

  1. Max possible=24. Total amount of treaties ratified. Nominal Commitment to Human Rights report published by UCL School of Public Policy, London, UK, at ucl.ac.uk/spp/research/research-projects/nchr accessed 2011 Apr 30.^^
  2. Reporters Without Borders Report "2013 World Press Freedom Index: Dashed hopes after spring" at fr.rsf.org/.../classement_2013_gb-bd.pdf accessed 2013 Feb.^^
  3. Sources:^^
  4. UN (2017). Table 5. Lower is better.^^
  5. Walk Free Foundation (2018) .^^
  6. Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (2017). Accessed 2017 Dec 30. The scores given are the TI average for the years 2012-2016.^^
  7. ^^
  8. Human Rights Watch (2018). P19-20.^^^
  9. Thomson (1993). P28.^
  10. McCall (1979). P180.^
  11. Thomson (1993). P166.^
  12. Casely-Hayford (2012). P253.^
  13. Thomson (1993). P31.^
  14. Thomson (1993). P199.^
  15. Thomson (1993). P28-29.^
  16. Klein (2004) .^
  17. Walk Free Foundation (2018). P2.^
  18. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life: 2.6. Women Stand for Election & Vote" by Vexen Crabtree (2018)^
  19. Donnelly (2013). Chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p278.^
  20. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" by Vexen Crabtree (2018)^

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