Albright Hints at Improved Relations With Taliban for Release of bin Laden

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright suggested yesterday that the extremist Taliban militia that is responsible for gender apartheid in Afghanistan might be granted improved relations with the United States if they release international terrorist Osama bin Laden. In response to reports that the Taliban may be willing to discuss bin Laden with the United States, Albright said, “It is very important for the Taliban, if they wish to be treated with any sense of regularity, that [bin Ladan] be expelled to a country where he can be brought to justice.”

Neither the United States nor the United Nations have recognized the Taliban regime as the legitimate government of Afghanistan, and the UN Security Council voted last week to impose sanctions on the Taliban unless bin Laden, who is accused of planning the bombing of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania last year, is extradicted by Nov. 14.

The Feminist Majority Foundation has led the effort to encourage both the U.S. State Department and the UN to withhold recognition until women and girls’ human rights have been restored. The Taliban militia has imposed a strict system of gender apartheid against all women living in areas controlled by the Taliban. The Taliban’s edicts, which have been brutally enforced, banish most women from the work force, closed schools to girls and expelled women from universities, and prohibited women from leaving their homes unless accompanied by a close male relative. Without full restoration of women’s and girls human rights, The Feminist Majority Foundation continues to urge a policy of nonrecognition for the Taliban militia.

Don’t Let U.S. Negotiate Afghan Women & Girls’ Lives for bin Laden


AP and Reuters - October 26, 1999

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