05.19.132:51 PM ET

Afghan Lawmakers Block Women’s Rights Legislation

Religious politicians said laws violated Islam.

Conservative lawmakers in Afghanistan on Saturday effectively blocked legislation that would have expanded women’s rights, arguing that parts of it violated Islamic principles and encourage disobedience. While women’s rights have improved since the old days of the Taliban, where the severe restrictions on women were one considered among the worst atrocities of the regime, Saturday’s drawback shows how conservative the country still is—and how some still live in fear of the Taliban. On the books by presidential decree since 2009, the Law on the Elimination of Violence Against Women was just coming before Parliament now so it could be cemented as law if a future president tries to repeal it—protection it no longer has.