Denmark decided Monday, January 30 to systematically grant asylum to women and girls from Afghanistan because of their gender, while they experience a sharp decline in their rights since the return of the Taliban to power in the country. “The decision is based on information relating to the continuing deterioration of the living conditions of women and girls in Afghanistan”the Danish Refugee Appeal Board said in a statement.
The committee relies on a recently published report by the European Union Agency for Asylum, which “indicates that the situation of a number of groups of people in Afghanistan, in particular women and girls, is such as to constitute persecution within the meaning of the refugee convention”. According to the Danish authority, five outstanding cases involving Afghan women will be granted asylum under the new decision.
All Afghan cases will be reviewed
The commission will also re-examine the cases concerning Afghan women to whom it refused asylum after the Taliban came to power, with a view to granting a residence permit to the persons concerned under this new decision (approximately ten cases). All the cases concerning male Afghan nationals (approximately thirty cases) to whom it has refused asylum since the same date will also be reviewed.
Since their return to power in August 2021, the Taliban have gradually eroded the freedoms won by women over the past twenty years since the fall of their previous regime in 2001. In addition to being deprived of the right to study, women are also banned from most government jobs. They are not allowed to travel without being accompanied by a male relative and must wear a burqa or hijab when leaving their homes.
In late December, Taliban authorities also ordered local and foreign NGOs to stop employing women after “serious complaints” concerning their way of dressing, four days after a ban on studying at university for the same reasons.