Farida Afridi’s murder Govt asked to establish writ
ISLAMABAD, July 8: Members of the Alliance for Ending Violence against Women and Girls (EVAWG) have strongly condemned the murder of renowned human rights defender Farida Afridi and demanded necessary action to ensure safety of all human rights defenders, particularly women in the country.
They have also demanded that Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) governor and political agent of FATA must take full responsibility for Farida’s murder, and ensure the safety of citizens who have been working tirelessly in the area for years to alleviate poverty, illiteracy, disease and despair among the communities.
According to a statement issued by the spokesperson of the EVAWG, Wasim Wagha, human rights workers – both men and women – were vulnerable and under threat as they were the target of extremist elements from within and from outside their communities.
“The ambush and targeted murder of Farida Afridi is even more shocking when one considers the historic cultural norms of Pakhtoonwali.
“We demand that the authorities should expeditiously capture and expose the murderers to the aggrieved family, community and the nation, mourning the loss of a dynamic woman leader and human rights defender,” it said.
Wagha added the uncontrolled abuse of religious authority by clerics in denouncing the noble work of human rights workers, NGOs and civil society members besides pronouncing death edicts (fatwa) from the pulpits was an alarming trend
and represented the federal and provincial governments’ failed ability to exercise their writ over a powerful minority while being unable to safeguard the fundamental rights of a vulnerable majority.
“We demand that government must establish its writ in these areas, where pockets of religious anarchy are running amok, as also seen recently in Kohistan,” he said.