United Nations


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

6 March 1996


Fiftieth session
Agenda item 112 (c)


            [on the report of the Third Committee (A/50/635/Add.3)]

            50/189.     Situation of human rights in Afghanistan

      The General Assembly,

      Guided by the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights,  1/ the International Covenants on
Human Rights  2/ and accepted humanitarian rules, as set out in the
Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949  3/ and the Additional
Protocols thereto, of 1977,  4/

      Reaffirming that all Member States have an obligation to promote
and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and to fulfil the
obligations they have freely undertaken under the various
international instruments,

      Recalling all its relevant resolutions, as well as the
resolutions of the Commission on Human Rights and the decisions of the
Economic and Social Council,

      Taking note, in particular, of Commission on Human Rights
resolution 1995/74 of 8 March 1995,  5/ in which the Commission
decided to extend the mandate of its Special Rapporteur on the
situation of human rights in Afghanistan for one year and requested
him to consider submitting a report to the General Assembly at its
fiftieth session, and of Economic and Social Council decision 1995/285
of 25 July 1995, in which the Council approved the Commission's

      Noting that armed confrontation persists in certain parts of the
territory of Afghanistan,

      Aware that peace and security in Afghanistan are conducive to the
full restoration of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, the
voluntary return of refugees to their homeland in safety and dignity,
the clearance of minefields in many parts of the country and the
reconstruction and rehabilitation of Afghanistan,

      Deeply concerned at reports of human rights abuses and violations
of humanitarian law and human rights, including the rights to life,
liberty and security of person and to freedom of opinion, expression
and association,

      Concerned in particular at reports of abuses and violations of
the human rights of women, including acts of violence and denial of
access to primary and basic education, training and employment,
affecting their effective participation in political and cultural life
throughout the country,

      Concerned that a unified judicial system cannot be established
throughout the country under the prevailing circumstances,

      Commending the activities carried out for the welfare of the
Afghan people by various agencies and programmes of the United Nations
and by the International Committee of the Red Cross and other
humanitarian organizations,

      Noting with satisfaction that the voluntary repatriation of the
Afghan refugees has resumed,

      Taking note with appreciation of the interim report of the
Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation
of human rights in Afghanistan,  6/ of the conclusions and
recommendations contained therein and of the translation of previous
reports into the Dari and Pashtu languages,

      1.    Welcomes the cooperation that the Government and local
authorities in Afghanistan have extended to the Special Rapporteur of
the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in
Afghanistan and to humanitarian agencies;

      2.    Urges all the Afghan parties to work with the United Nations
Special Mission to Afghanistan with a view to achieving a
comprehensive political solution leading to the cessation of armed
confrontation and the eventual establishment of a democratic
Government elected through free and fair elections based on the right
to self-determination of the people of Afghanistan;

      3.    Recognizes that the promotion and protection of human rights
should be an essential element in the achievement of a comprehensive
solution to the crisis in Afghanistan, and therefore invites the
Special Mission and the Special Rapporteur to exchange relevant
information and to consult and cooperate with each other;

      4.    Also urges all the Afghan parties to respect accepted
humanitarian rules and all human rights and fundamental freedoms,
including the rights of women and children, and calls upon the Afghan
authorities to take measures to ensure the effective participation of
women in social, political and cultural life throughout the country;

      5.    Calls for the unconditional and simultaneous release of all
prisoners of war, wherever they may be held, including former Soviet
prisoners of war, and for the tracing of the many Afghans still
missing as a result of the war;

      6.    Calls upon the Afghan authorities to investigate thoroughly
the fate of those persons who have disappeared during the conflict, to
apply the amnesty decree issued in 1992 by the Transitional Islamic
State of Afghanistan in a strictly non-discriminatory manner, to
reduce the period during which prisoners await trial and to treat all
suspected, convicted or detained persons according to relevant
international instruments;

      7.    Urges the Afghan authorities to provide sufficient and
effective remedies to the victims of grave violations of human rights
and accepted humanitarian rules and to bring their perpetrators to
trial in accordance with internationally accepted standards;

      8.    Appeals to Member States and to the international community
to continue to provide adequate humanitarian assistance to the people
of Afghanistan and to the Afghan refugees in the neighbouring
countries, pending their voluntary repatriation according to relevant
international instruments, in particular through the support of
activities such as mine detection and clearance and repatriation
projects undertaken by the United Nations High Commissioner for
Refugees, the Coordinator for Humanitarian and Economic Assistance
Programmes Relating to Afghanistan as well as by United Nations
agencies or non-governmental humanitarian organizations;

      9.    Strongly urges all parties to the conflict to take all
necessary measures to ensure the safety of all personnel of
humanitarian organizations and representatives of the media in

      10.   Invites the United Nations to offer, upon the request of the
Afghan authorities and with due regard for Afghan tradition, advisory
services and technical assistance concerning the drafting of a
constitution, which should embody internationally accepted human
rights principles, and the holding of direct elections;

      11.   Encourages the United Nations Educational, Scientific and
Cultural Organization to study, with the contribution of its competent
committees, appropriate ways and means to restore the Afghan system of
education and the Afghan cultural heritage, in particular the
restoration of the Kabul Museum;

      12.   Urges the Afghan authorities to continue to extend their
full cooperation to the Commission on Human Rights and its Special

      13.   Requests the Secretary-General to give all necessary
assistance to the Special Rapporteur;

      14.   Decides to keep the situation of human rights in Afghanistan
under consideration at its fifty-first session, in the light of
additional elements provided by the Commission on Human Rights and the
Economic and Social Council.

                                                          99th plenary meeting
                                                              22 December 1995


1/          Resolution 217 A (III).

2/          Resolution 2200 A (XXI), annex.

3/          United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 75, Nos. 970-973.

4/          Ibid., vol. 1125, Nos. 17512 and 17513.

5/          See Official Records of the Economic and Social Council,
1995, Supplement No. 3 and corrigenda (E/1995/23 and Corr.1 and 2),
chap. II, sect. A.

6/          See A/50/567.

This document has been posted online by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA). Reproduction and dissemination of the document - in electronic and/or printed format - is encouraged, provided acknowledgement is made of the role of the United Nations in making it available.

Date last posted: 15 January 2000 16:15:30
Comments and suggestions: esa@un.org