Afghan-Iranian Women’s Coalition

against Gender Violence and Gender Apartheid

Afghan-Iranian Women’s Coalition against
Gender-Based Violence and Gender-Apartheid

The NZ coalition of Afghan and Iranian women against Gender-Based Violence and
Gender-Apartheid consists of a group of women’s rights activists/advocates who have come
together and joined their efforts to raise awareness about systematic discrimination and
oppression of Afghan and Iranian women under Taliban and the regime of theIslamic republic in
Women and girls residing under the regimes of the Islamic Republic of Iran and Taliban in
Afghanistan are subjected to an extreme, systematic, and structural form of oppression. The
regime’s design is intended to dehumanise and repress women in order to entrench their power.
However, in spite of the obstacles, Afghan and Iranian women are showing great courage in their
fight against being treated as second-class citizens under the law, which governs their bodily
autonomy, access to education and economic resources, and deprives them of basic human rights
and dignity.
The apartheid standards in international law, primarily developed in the 20th century, were intended
to address racial apartheid. However, they fail to account for intersectional identities, particularly
those who live under theocratic, patriarchal, misogynistic and authoritarian systems of power (e.g.
women of colour, women from religious and ethnic minority groups, women on a low income, trans
women, Rainbow people, and disabled women.) As such, it is imperative that the definition of
apartheid under international law be broadened to encompass gender hierarchies, in addition to
racial hierarchies.
By recognising gender-based apartheid, we can more effectively address the unique forms of
discrimination and oppression experienced by women of colour in theocratic and authoritarian
societies. These systems of power often perpetuate gender-based discrimination and violence,
which are not adequately addressed under current international law.
Therefore, it is crucial that international law incorporate a more inclusive definition of apartheid, one
that recognises the experiences of women of colour living under theocratic and authoritarian regimes.
Only then can we begin to dismantle these oppressive systems and work towards a more just and
equitable society.
The purpose of this coalition is to broaden the range of moral, political, and legal tools available to
mobilise international action against gender apartheid in Afghanistan and Iran, with the ultimate goal
of putting an end to these oppressive systems.
While we consider ourselves a part of the global campaign launched to End Gender-Apartheid in
Afghanistan and Iran ( ), our focus is also on promoting gender
equality, protecting women’s rights, and ending gender-based discrimination and violence within
Aotearoa New Zealand.
We are committed to working towards a more just and equitable society, both domestically and
internationally. By joining forces with other like-minded individuals and organisations, we hope to
contribute to the broader struggle against gender apartheid and towards a more inclusive and
equitable world for all.

Values & Principles
● The coalition believes in the inherent equality of all individuals, regardless of their
gender, race, ethnicity or religious background.
● The coalition believes in the importance of justice for people experiencing gender-based
discrimination and violence .
● The coalition aims to tackle social and structural inequities, eliminate barriers, and facilitate
full, active, and equal participation of women and girls in all aspects of society, such as
education, employment, politics, and leadership .
● The coalition strives to be inclusive of people of all genders, races, ethnicities, religions,
sexual orientations, and backgrounds.
● The coalition recognises the intersectional nature of gender-based discrimination and
works to address the ways in which discrimination affects different groups of people
● The coalition works collaboratively with other organisations and groups to build a strong
and diverse network of advocates for gender equality.
● The coalition places a high priority on education and awareness-raising efforts related to
gender apartheid, including its causes and effects. Additionally, the coalition aims to
mobilise communities to address gender-based violence and the phenomenon of gender
● The coalition denounces all forms of violence and abuse, and emphasises the importance of
employing democratic, peaceful and nonviolent means of advocacy and protest as a top
● The coalition values and respects the dignity and rights of all individuals, regardless of
their gender or other identities.
● The coalition holds institutions accountable for their actions and policies that perpetuate
gender apartheid and work towards justice and accountability for victims of
gender-based discrimination and violence.

We envision a world where women are equal and free to fully participate in all aspects of life,
where they are not oppressed or discriminated against because of their gender, and where
gender equality and equity is recognised and valued as a fundamental human rights especially
in countries of Iran and Afghanistan where women are facing gender discrimination and

We are determined to work towards the elimination of gender-based discrimination, oppression,
and exclusion, and to promote gender equality and equity and human rights in Afghanistan and
Iran as well as in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Approach & Strategy
To achieve this mission, the coalition works to:
● Raise awareness about the detrimental effects of gender-based violence and systematic
oppression, and in particular gender apartheid and promote a greater understanding of
the issues and challenges faced by women who live under gender apartheid.
● Challenge patriarchal and misogynistic systems, norms, and power structures that
perpetuate gender-based violence and gender apartheid.
● Seek to advocate for gender equality as a fundamental human right by confronting harmful
practices and policies that uphold such inequalities and inequities .
● Promote collaboration among its members and with other organisations that share the
common goal of achieving gender equality , equity and gender justice
● Amplify and centre the experiences of women in Iran and Afghanistan living under
gender apartheid.
● Encourage politicians and policy makers to make statements, issue resolutions and
shape other policy responses to condemn the misogynistic and patriarchal systems of
power , in particular gender apartheid regimes in Iran and Afghanistan.
● Persuade the New Zealand Parliament to interpret and/or expand the legal definition of
apartheid, under both national and international laws. Specifically, the coalition seeks to
include severe forms of institutionalised gender-based discrimination and violence
experienced by intersectional identities, such as women of colour, including those in
Afghanistan and Iran.
● Make the NZ government hold institutions in Afghanistan and Iran accountable for their
actions and policies that perpetuate gender apartheid, and work towards justice and
accountability for victims of gender-based discrimination and violence.
● Provide support and resources to women who e experienced/experience gender apartheid in
their home country and experienced/experience different forms of gender based violence
before and after leaving their home countries. These support services and resources include
emotional support, counselling and therapy, legal, education and awareness support and
services .

The coalition shall be governed by a steering committee consisting of at least three members.
The steering committee shall be responsible for making decisions on behalf of the coalition,
coordinating activities and events, and representing the coalition to the public.

Membership in the coalition shall be open to any individual or organisation that supports the
values, vision, and purpose of the coalition and is committed to working towards gender equality
and the elimination of gender-based discrimination and violence.

The coalition shall seek funding from various sources, including grants, donations, and
fundraising activities. All funds received by the coalition shall be used for the purposes outlined

This charter may be amended by a two-thirds majority vote of the steering committee members
of the coalition.

We, the members of the Afghan-Iranian Women’s Coalition against Gender-Based Violence and
Gender-Apartheid, hereby pledge our commitment to the goals and objectives outlined in this
charter. We believe that by working together, we can bring about meaningful positive social
change and foster a just/fairer and (more) equitable society for women across the globe,
including in Afghanistan and Iran.
A group of Afghan and Iranian women’s rights advocates/activists,
human rights activists, journalists, judges, and international law

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