EARTHDAY.ORG’s Statement on the Crisis in Afghanistan

“The Taliban could take our pens and books, but they couldn’t stop our minds from thinking.” Those are the words of Malala Yousafzai, a Nobel Prize laureate who became world-renowned for her story of struggle against the oppression of young girls trying to seek an education in a Taliban-controlled region of Pakistan in 2012.  

As the U.S. withdraws its military presence from Afghanistan and the Taliban regains control of that nation, it is important to keep those words so eloquently put by Malala Yousafzai in mind. The troubling fact before us now is that among those who will be left behind after the U.S. withdrawal, without means to safeguard their human rights, will be women who only wanted their independence and the ability to advance themselves in society and realize their dreams. These are people who for almost a decade knew an Afghanistan free of the oppression of Taliban rule. To have that reality ripped away is a tragedy that will not soon be forgotten.  

EARTHDAY.ORG stands in solidarity with the young girls and women of Afghanistan. We call on the United Nations and the international community to step in and work to help ensure that these women and girls are not forgotten and that their rights are taken seriously by the new government. The world is watching.