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Afghanistan

Afghanistan

Asia

Endorsements

Safe Schools Declaration

Year Endorsed: 2015

Paris Principles

Not Endorsed

Vancouver Principles

Not Endorsed

EWIPA Declaration

Not Endorsed

Implementation

Has not established a national action plan or technical committee on the SSD

Relevant UN Resolutions

No current sponsorships
GCPEA Education Under Attack

Profiled in GCPEA Education Under Attack

Profiled in: 2022, 2020, 2018, 2014

Other Important Information
Memberships in International Regional Organizations

No current memberships

Peacekeeping

Is not a peacekeeping contributing country

Key Information

Key information about the country.

Advocacy Meetings

Chronological recap of the engagement with this state or any other relevant information that can support advocacy.

January – March 2017: Member of Core Group in Geneva but did not attend meetings. Responded to emails.

March 2017: Attended Buenos Aires Conference on Safe Schools and provided a speaker – third secretary from Geneva mission.

March 2017: UNAMA organized a workshop in Mazar, Afghanistan, aimed at finding ways to prevent the recruitment of children by armed groups. The workshop included sessions outlining international legal instruments including the SSD, which Afghanistan endorsed in 2015.

May 2017: Human Rights Watch issued a letter to all NATO member states about civilian protection in Afghanistan, asking them to help Afghanistan to stop using schools in light of their shared commitments under the Declaration.

September 2017 UNSC: GCPEA sent a letter to the Ambassador of Afghanistan in New York asking to raise issue of attacks and military use and to draw attention to the Declaration and Guidelines during the Open Debate on Children and Armed Conflict.

October 2017: Human Rights Watch issued a report on barriers to access to education for girls in Afghanistan, together with a new animation video, highlighting many of these barriers, including attacks on students and military use of schools.

March 2018: During the Annual Day on the Rights of the Child, 5 March: Afghanistan highlighted their support for the Declaration in their national statement.

May 2018: In its monthly update for May, Watchlist called on Afghanistan to implementation the Declaration.

July 2018: Co-sponsored resolution 2427 (2018).

August 2018: Norwegian Refugee Council issued a report, Educational Sites in Afghanistan are Changing from Bastions of Hope and Safety into Spaces of Fear, Armed Conflict and Politics. According to the report, schools in Afghanistan are increasingly becoming military, ideological, and political battlegrounds. “28 per cent of surveyed children and parents stated that schools in their places of origin had been closed due to the conflict. NRC found that the majority of surveyed children do not feel safe at school, with many boys and girls terrified that their school would be attacked. 12 per cent had experienced attacks on their school and 15 per cent experienced shooting very near to their school building. Many had missed exams or periods of school, either because of threats from armed actors, or because they or their parents believed that the school would be targeted. 36 per cent of the children were frightened about risks of kidnap or attack en route to school.” The report also refers to NRC Afghanistan’s new 2018-2020 Protection Strategy which will focus partly on protecting education and operationalizing the Safe Schools Declaration.

November 2018: GCPEA has been working with Save the Children to prepare a briefing paper on attacks on education in Afghanistan that will be released on November 26, ahead of the Geneva Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan that will take place in Geneva on November 27-28.

November 2018: GCPEA released Attacks on Education in Afghanistan briefing paper to coincide with the Geneva Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan, where the Afghan Government and the international community will gather to discuss strategies for achieving peace and development in the country.

March 2019: mentioned their endorsement of the Safe Schools Declaration during the Clustered Interactive Dialogue with the SRSG CAAC Virginia Gamba, HRC Geneva. Joined Norway’s joint statement on the Safe Schools Declaration.

May 2019: Participated in the Third International Conference in Palma.

December 2019: HRW made a submission to CEDAW: https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/12/23/submission-committee-elimination-discrimination-against-women-review-afghanistan.

April 2020: the Safe Schools Declaration was referenced by the Working Group in connection with the examination of the fourth report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Afghanistan (document S/2019/727).

March 2020: the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women has now made its first reference to the Guidelines for Protecting Schools from Military Used during Armed Conflict, in its concluding observations regarding Afghanistan

Oct 2020: GCPEA Director attended a joint virtual meeting which brought together the Group of Friends of Afghanistan in New York, Group of Friends of Children and Armed Conflict in New York, and the Group of Friends of Children and Armed Conflict in Kabul, Afghanistan. In her intervention, Diya highlighted that attacks against students and education personnel accelerated dramatically during 2017-2019 and gave concrete recommendations to strengthen implementation of the Safe Schools Declaration.
March 2017: Attended Buenos Aires Conference on Safe Schools and provided a speaker – third secretary from Geneva mission.

March 2017: UNAMA organized a workshop in Mazar, Afghanistan, aimed at finding ways to prevent the recruitment of children by armed groups. The workshop included sessions outlining international legal instruments including the SSD, which Afghanistan endorsed in 2015.

May 2017: Human Rights Watch issued a letter to all NATO member states about civilian protection in Afghanistan, asking them to help Afghanistan to stop using schools in light of their shared commitments under the Declaration.

September 2017 UNSC: GCPEA sent a letter to the Ambassador of Afghanistan in New York asking to raise issue of attacks and military use and to draw attention to the Declaration and Guidelines during the Open Debate on Children and Armed Conflict.

October 2017: Human Rights Watch issued a report on barriers to access to education for girls in Afghanistan, together with a new animation video, highlighting many of these barriers, including attacks on students and military use of schools.

March 2018: During the Annual Day on the Rights of the Child, 5 March: Afghanistan highlighted their support for the Declaration in their national statement.

May 2018: In its monthly update for May, Watchlist called on Afghanistan to implementation the Declaration.

July 2018: Co-sponsored resolution 2427 (2018).

August 2018: Norwegian Refugee Council issued a report, Educational Sites in Afghanistan are Changing from Bastions of Hope and Safety into Spaces of Fear, Armed Conflict and Politics. According to the report, schools in Afghanistan are increasingly becoming military, ideological, and political battlegrounds. “28 per cent of surveyed children and parents stated that schools in their places of origin had been closed due to the conflict. NRC found that the majority of surveyed children do not feel safe at school, with many boys and girls terrified that their school would be attacked. 12 per cent had experienced attacks on their school and 15 per cent experienced shooting very near to their school building. Many had missed exams or periods of school, either because of threats from armed actors, or because they or their parents believed that the school would be targeted. 36 per cent of the children were frightened about risks of kidnap or attack en route to school.” The report also refers to NRC Afghanistan’s new 2018-2020 Protection Strategy which will focus partly on protecting education and operationalizing the Safe Schools Declaration.

November 2018: GCPEA has been working with Save the Children to prepare a briefing paper on attacks on education in Afghanistan that will be released on November 26, ahead of the Geneva Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan that will take place in Geneva on November 27-28.

November 2018: GCPEA released Attacks on Education in Afghanistan briefing paper to coincide with the Geneva Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan, where the Afghan Government and the international community will gather to discuss strategies for achieving peace and development in the country.

March 2019: mentioned their endorsement of the Safe Schools Declaration during the Clustered Interactive Dialogue with the SRSG CAAC Virginia Gamba, HRC Geneva. Joined Norway’s joint statement on the Safe Schools Declaration.

May 2019: Participated in the Third International Conference in Palma.

December 2019: HRW made a submission to CEDAW: https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/12/23/submission-committee-elimination-discrimination-against-women-review-afghanistan.

April 2020: the Safe Schools Declaration was referenced by the Working Group in connection with the examination of the fourth report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Afghanistan (document S/2019/727).

March 2020: the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women has now made its first reference to the Guidelines for Protecting Schools from Military Used during Armed Conflict, in its concluding observations regarding Afghanistan

Oct 2020: GCPEA Director attended a joint virtual meeting which brought together the Group of Friends of Afghanistan in New York, Group of Friends of Children and Armed Conflict in New York, and the Group of Friends of Children and Armed Conflict in Kabul, Afghanistan. In her intervention, Diya highlighted that attacks against students and education personnel accelerated dramatically during 2017-2019 and gave concrete recommendations to strengthen implementation of the Safe Schools Declaration.

Examples of Good Practice

What, if anything, the country has done to protect education and/or implement any of the 8 commitments outlined in the Declaration.

Commitment 1

In 2016, the Ministry of Education of Afghanistan wrote to the Ministry of Interior and the National Security Council calling on security forces to evacuate schools. Between 2016 and 2018, military use of schools significantly declined according to UN verified data

Commitment 2

None

 

Commitment 3

None

Commitment 4

None

Commitment 5

None

Commitment 6

None

Commitment 7

None

Commitment 8

None

Other

None

State-led Implementation Network

None

International Conferences

None

Relevant Contacts

Contact information of the representatives of Permanent Missions, and national Ministries as well as the focal points for the State-led Implementation Network.

Other Relevant Information

Other relevant information about the country.

None