Friday, March 9, 2012
Karzai supports statement that men are fundamental women secondary
Afghan President Hamid Karzai endorsed a statement issued by the 150 member Ulema Council of clerics that "Men are fundamental and women are secondary," The statement of the clerical council was subsequently posted on Karzai's own website.
The statement also said that men and women should not mix in work or educational settings. If women travel then they must have a male guardian with them. While the recommendations do not have the force of law they will be seen as significant guidelines. The Afghan government has moved to support more stringent Islamic rules of the type favored by the Taliban. In fact there are a number of so-called reformed Taliban already in the government. Reformed simply means they accept government authority.
Organizations such as Young Women for Change (YWC) worry that they will be criticized for allowing men and women to work together in their organization. The organization was formed last April. It decided that it could be more effective if it got men involved and it did. For more see this article.