Widespread protection risks persist in Afghanistan as a consequence of the continuing humanitarian and economic crisis, as well as due to shrinking protection spaces particularly for women, girls, and other vulnerable groups. The human rights situation has been exacerbated by conflict, forced eviction, bureaucratic access impediments, as well as natural disasters like earthquakes and flooding. This has a devastating effect on population coping capacities and vulnerabilities, which is escalating the impact of existing protection risks.
During this quarter, de facto authorities (DfA) continued threatened and actual forced eviction of people living in informal settlements both on public and private land.
Moreover, following the armed clashes between Mawlawi Mehdi Mujahid, Hazara Commander and DFA forces, more than 3,000 families were displaced from Balkhab district and fled to mountainous areas and neighbouring districts and provinces. By mid-July most of the affected families had returned to their villages, and reportedly the majority were forced to return by the authorities. The limitations on movement of women go far beyond the mere issue of ability to move, and present grave implications for women who are struggling to support their families, especially those women who are breadwinners or the heads of their families.
The DfA are increasingly asserting their control over the provision of humanitarian assistance and using bureaucratic mechanisms to influence humanitarian service provision. This is leading to protection risks for affected population and a worsening complex operating environment for NGOs.
The protection risks requiring immediate attention in the period covered by this analysis are:
- Discrimination and stigmatization, denial of resources, opportunities, services and/or humanitarian assistance
- Unlawful Impediments or restrictions to freedom of movement and forced displacement/eviction
- Psychological and inflicted distress
- Presence of mines and other explosive ordnance
- Forced and child marriage