UN says forced into ‘appalling choice’ by Taliban ban on women

KABUL (AFP): The United Nations is being forced into making an “appalling choice” on whether to continue operations in Afghanistan by the Taliban government banning women from working for the organization, the world body said Tuesday.

“Through this ban, the Taliban de facto authorities seek to force the United Nations into having to make an appalling choice between staying and delivering in support of the Afghan people and standing by the norms and principles we are duty-bound to uphold,” the UN mission in Afghanistan said in a statement.

On April 4, the UN said Taliban authorities had ordered its mission to stop all Afghan women from working at its offices across the country.

Mission head Roza Otunbayeva had initiated an “operational review” to decide the next steps, the statement said.

“It should be clear that any negative consequences of this crisis for the Afghan people will be the responsibility of the de facto authorities,” it said.