Nadia Sediqqi, acting head of the Women’s Affairs department in the Afghanistan province Laghman, was assassinated on her way to work on Monday. No one has stepped forward to claim responsibility.
She was traveling to work without any bodyguards, a normal occurrence for female workers in Afghanistan. Gunmen shot her as she was getting in a rickshaw, about 93 miles east of Kabul.
Violence against women is on the rise in Afghanistan; activists and lawmakers blame the government’s lack of interest in women’s rights. President Hamid Karzai denies this, but he is attempting peace talks with the Taliban.
Women regained access to education, voting, and employment when the Taliban were ousted in 2001.
Ms. Sediqqi’s predecessor, Hanifa Safi, was murdered with a car bomb in July. Her family blames the Taliban.
Safi asked for protection on multiple occasions but was ignored each time. She was an outspoken proponent of fair treatment of women in Afghanistan.