The absence of a journalist representative in the peace talks has been repeatedly cited by the media as a major concern in which their achievements, mainly in the area of freedom of expression, may be lost. According to Ali Javadi, the dramatic growth of media and female journalists are the key achievements in the area of freedom of the press that must be persevered during the peace talks.

CSHRN: Will the peace talks ensure a favorable condition for the work of female journalists?

Javadi: People will resist any restriction; however, the working space will shrink for the work of female journalists. This may be partly the result of security deterioration, which will have negative implications on the freedom of female journalists in the country.

CSHRN: How do you assess the presence of female journalists in Daikundi province?

Javadi: Their presence is very low across the local media in Daikundi. Currently, only three female journalists work there, of which two of them are volunteers. Financial problems, mainly the Covid-19 pandemic has further squeezed the female journalists. Six public and private media outlets are operating in Daikundi, in which a small number of female staff are working.

CSHRN: What are other reasons for the lack of female journalists in the province?

Javadi: As a newly established province, the negligence from the central government, lack of financial support, and development projects are the three key reasons for female journalists not to flourish in this province.

CSHRN: How will peace help women’s lives?

Javadi: If peace is ensured, women will not have symbolic but active and meaningful participation in public affairs. They will also be able to share their views openly and publicly.

CSHRN: How do you predict the outcome of the peace talks?

Javadi: Nothing will change for better unless the Taliban change their views. I think, even after the possible peace agreement, the Taliban fighters will return to the battleground.

More interviews: