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Dr. Habiba Sarabi, a trailblazing leader in Afghanistan, is one of only four women negotiating peace with the Taliban as part of the ongoing intra-Afghan talks. Trained as a hematologist, she became a peace activist, politician and reformer in the reconstruction of Afghanistan. She has served as Minister of Women’s Affairs and in 2005 became the first Afghan woman to serve as a governor. She continues to be instrumental in promoting women’s rights and peacebuilding at a crucial turning point for her nation.
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Palwasha Hassan is a mobilizer who fought for the rights of women to be enshrined in Afghanistan’s 2004 Constitution. She is an advisor at the country’s High Peace Council (which is tasked with negotiating with elements of the Taliban), and also the Executive Director of the Afghan Women’s Educational Centre (AWEC). She has been a political and women’s rights activist since her early youth, volunteering with a women’s movement in 1995...
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Justice Anisa Rasooli was recently appointed as the first woman to sit on the Supreme Court of Afghanistan. She has been a powerful advocate for bringing more women into judicial positions, including as a leader of the Afghan Women Judges Association, an organization supported by UN Women. Serving for 23 years in the judicial system, Justice Rasooli can remember when stigma against going to a judicial institution was so great that most women would not do so, even to register a marriage. Today, rates of violence against...
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Halima Askari became the first woman head of the Provincial Council in Afghanistan’s conservative Wardak province in 2017. She is part of a new generation of women leaders who, little by little, are pushing for the transformation of governance. She ran for national Parliament this year and is awaiting the results. Regardless of the election results, Askari is determined to continue serving her community and advocating for girls...
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Nabila Musleh, Afghanistan’s Deputy Minister of Women's Affairs, has worked to promote gender equality, women’s empowerment and human rights in Afghanistan for more than 10 years. From 11-16 August, Ms. Musleh joined 32 other senior government officials for a visit to Indonesia to learn about their gender-responsive budgeting experience. Indonesia has successfully championed...
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Deeba Ayubi, 27, is a women’s rights activist and defense lawyer with UN Women’s partner organization, Women for Afghan Women (WAW), which protects and supports survivors of violence. Ayubi is passionate about helping women and girls achieve a life free from all forms of violence, and dreams of becoming a judge. Even as a kid, I wanted to become a judge. My father would call me ‘Judge Deeba’. Before his death...