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[Email This Page to a Friend ] [More of Afghan Politics] [ Start a Topic in Afghan Politics]
Afghan President Called on Parents not to Give Away Daughters into Forced and Early Marriages
Posted by AFSHEEN101 on 3/12/2008

President Karzai Called on Parents not to Give Away Daughters into Forced and Early Marriages


March 08, 2008

President Hamid Karzai addressed on Saturday an audience of hundreds of women during an International Women's Day ceremony in Kabul urging that Afghan women need the freedom to pursue more education and should not be forced into marriage.

At an opening speech, Husn Bano Ghazanfar, Minister for Women’s Affairs congratulated her country on the International Women’s Day and said her Ministry is firmly committed to uplifting in close cooperation with other government and non-government agencies the education, economic and cultural status of women in Afghanistan.

She insisted that her Ministry is taking stronger steps to empower women into increased participation in social, political and economic engagements. Among the achievements the Minister pointed at was a 10-year action plan that lays out wasy to improve women situation in Afghanistan.

Despite the challenges and social problems facing Afghan women, the President said he was pleased to see the situation improving compared to the previous years.

Stressing on the importance of educating girls, the President called on Afghan men and religious leaders to promote education for females, saying the country needed more female nurses and doctors.

He also called for end to the under-aged marriages urging parents to stop such oppressive practices, "How can a father accept with his heart to marry his 15-year-old child with a 60 year-old-man?” He continued, "Again, I call on the people, they shouldn't give their daughters for money, they shouldn't give them to old men, and they shouldn't give them in forced marriages."

Speaking on the challenges Afghanistan still faces, the President said "In parts of Afghanistan, girls can't go to schools because of threat from terrorism; while in other parts the parents do not allow girls to go to schools.”

At the context of this ceremony, President Karzai inaugurated an exhibition of women’s handicrafts and works, considered a step forward in economic empowerment of women.

In recognition of his outstanding leadership devoted to the improvement of women’s status in Afghanistan, President Karzai was presented with a letter of appreciation by the Ministry.
 
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