Home Page
Internet Course
Issue Statements
UPR Reviews & Follow-up
WUNRN-Womens's UN Report Network
1986 - Tolerance for Diversity of Religion or Belief
2012 - The Tandem Project Fellowship
Now is the Time






The Tandem Project is a UN NGO in Special Consultative Status with the
Economic and Social Council of the United Nations

Separation of Religion or Belief and State

Universal Periodic Review reports in six languages  


Universal Periodic Review - Afghanistan

Only contributions submitted in one of the United Nations official languages are admissible and posted on this webpage
Date of consideration: Thursday 7 May 2009 - 2.30 p.m. - 5.30 p.m.




Flag of Afghanistan 

The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) is a unique process launched by the UN Human Rights Council in 2008 to review the human rights obligations and responsibilities of UN Member States by 2011. The UN Human Rights Council has recommend a second cycle starting in 2013. UPR Process and News: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/UPR/Pages/UPRMain.aspx
Stakeholder Letters: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/UPR/Pages/UPRAFStakeholdersInfoS5.aspx

WG: http://daccess-dds-ny.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/G09/146/14/PDF/G0914614.pdf?OpenElement

Main Country Page: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/AsiaRegion/Pages/AFIndex.aspx

Follow-up cycle: The Afghanistan Universal Periodic Review four year follow-up cycle is two years old. Religious freedom in Afghanistan remains problematic.  The U.S. State Depart report (below) documents the following effort:

“Under the United States Agency for International Development supported Initiative to Promote Afghan Civil Society, Counterpart Afghanistan undertook a project to engage Muslim religious leaders who were instrumental in the formation of public opinion throughout the organization. Counterpart Afghanistan organized eight roundtables with Ulema (four in Kabul, two in Herat and one each in Balkh and Nangarhar Provinces) in which 66 persons participated including 58 Ulema, nine of whom were females, and eight civil society representatives. The purpose of these roundtables was to initiate dialogue with the Ulema on their perceptions of civil society and the concept of democracy from an Islamic point of view, to seek their opinions on the misperceptions and skepticism held by the general public regarding civil society, and to solicit recommendations on eliminating negative views. A report on "How Ulema View Afghan Civil Society" was published in 2010.”

The Tandem Project recommends “How Ulema View Afghan Civil Society” be made available for interfaith dialogue at a local level in the United States and abroad in accordance with the request of the UN Human Rights Council under draft resolution (A/HRC/16/L.38) on March 24, 2011.


U.S. State Department 2010 International Religious Freedom Report, Afghanistan


The Tandem Project a non-governmental organization (NGO) founded in 1986 to build understanding, tolerance, and respect for diversity of religion or belief, and to prevent discrimination in matters relating to freedom of religion or belief. The Tandem Project has sponsored multiple conferences, curricula, reference material and programs on Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights- Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion – and the 1981 United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief.

In 1968 the United Nations deferred work on a legally-binding treaty on religious intolerance as too complex and sensitive and passed a non-binding declaration in its place. The Tandem Project believes until a core legally-binding human rights Convention on Freedom of Religion or Belief  is adopted international human rights law will be incomplete. It may be time to begin to consider reinstating the 1968 Working Group to better organize and bring all matters relating to freedom of religion or belief under one banner, a core international human rights legally-binding treaty.

Global Advocacy for the Universal Values and Principles of Human Rights
and Freedom of Religion or Belief through Education and Research

Documents Attached: Can a Person who is Muslim Choose a Religion Other than Islam; Background - Human Rights & Freedom of Religion or Belief; 1981 UN Declaration on Freedom of Religion or Belief & 1990 Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam