Evacuation of staff of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission. The Commissioner appeals to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Date:
  • The Commissioner for Human Rights asked to rescue staff of the Afghan Ombudsman's office
  • Staff of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission are in a very difficult position
  • AIHRC employed about 90 people, of whom 60 are women, who are particularly vulnerable at the moment
  • The international community, including Poland, has a moral obligation to help these people

The Commissioner for Human Rights has received an appeal from the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions (ENNHRI) concerning the extremely difficult situation of staff members at the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC), the counterpart of the Polish Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights. Yesterday, ENNHRI also sent an appeal on this issue to, among others, the European G7 countries.

The AIHRC is an independent human rights institution that has been working since 2002 to uphold basic human rights standards. The Afghan Torture Prevention Mechanism is also part of the AIHRC. Over the past years, employees of this institution have cooperated with human rights institutions in other countries and have made efforts to promote human rights standards and democratic values in Afghanistan. These values are particularly important for the Republic of Poland and Polish society, which has experienced political repression and restrictions on basic civil rights.

The AIHRC employed about 90 people, 60 of whom are women, who are now particularly vulnerable. Because of their activities, they are now at risk of repression, and their family members are also in danger. The international community, including Poland, has a moral obligation to help them.

The Commissioner has sent to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (and to the Prime Minister's Office for information) a list of AIHRC staff members and their families awaiting evacuation, received from the ENNHRI, and requests that they should be included in the ongoing evacuation efforts as soon as possible.

The Commissioner for Human Rights has also expressed his great appreciation for the actions taken by Poland so far in the evacuation from Afghanistan, which undoubtedly saved many Afghans threatened by repression.