"Implementation of the Elimination of Violence against Women law in Afghanistan, December 2012"
Periodic evaluation of progress on implementation of the Law on Elimination of Violence against Women, reinforced in the June 2012 Tokyo Mutual Accountability Framework, is imperative in view of the widespread occurrence of violence against women in Afghanistan and resistance to women’s rights at various levels of Afghan society. Harmful practices and violence against women in Afghanistan have long prevented women from participating in public life and blocked their voices from being heard in decision-making and political forums. Progress in implementing the EVAW law can contribute to enabling women to play a meaningful and crucial role in the country’s current peace and reconciliation processes. The United Nations has repeatedly stressed the imperative of ensuring equal participation of women and their full involvement in all efforts to achieve durable peace and security, and the need to increase women’s role in decision-making and in conflict prevention and resolution.
This report examines implementation of the Law on Elimination of Violence against Women (EVAW law) by judicial and law enforcement officials for the period October 2011 to September 2012 and identifies the many challenges Afghan women still face in accessing justice. The analysis is based on information gathered from 22 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces and highlights the reporting, registration and judicial process followed under the EVAW law and the Penal Code by the Afghan National Police (ANP), prosecutor’s offices and primary courts in a representative sample of violence against women incidents. From 16 provinces, UNAMA gathered and analyzed more detailed data from police, prosecutors and courts on cases processed using the EVAW law. The report also highlights the crucial role and work of provincial departments of women’s affairs and commissions on elimination of violence against women. This report updates earlier findings on the law’s implementation in UNAMA’s November 2011 report A Long Way to Go: Implementation of the Elimination of Violence against Women Law in Afghanistan.