South Asians for Human Rights

Promoting Democracy, Upholding Human Rights

Right Livelihood Award Foundation condemns deadly attack against employees of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission in Jalalabad

The Right Livelihood Award Foundation offers its deepest condolences to the families of two employees of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC), who were killed when a remote-controlled improvised explosive device detonated against the organisation’s vehicle in Jalalabad, eastern Afghanistan, on 26 October. Six other staff of the AIHRC were injured as a result of the attack.

The AIHRC is chaired by 2012 Right Livelihood Award Laureate Sima Samar. Reacting to the news, Ole von Uexkull, Executive Director, Right Livelihood Award Foundation said: “The Right Livelihood Award Foundation joins the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, in deeply deploring and condemning this shocking and cowardly act of violence against staff of the AIHRC, who are working tirelessly to promote a culture of human rights for all in Afghanistan. We urge the authorities to undertake a speedy and impartial investigation to hold those responsible for this heinous crime to account. Further, we call upon the authorities to take robust measures to protect human rights defenders against reprisals for their important work to protect the rights of Afghan citizens. At the time of this tragedy, we stand in full solidarity with our Laureate Sima Samar and all her colleagues at AIHRC, as they continue to carry out their mandate courageously in the face of these attacks.”

Sima Samar said: “We at the AIHRC work for the protection and promotion of human rights of everyone. We are impartial and independent in our work. I call upon all warring parties to respect international humanitarian law and human rights law. I call upon them to refrain attacking civilians including the AIHRC staff and offices.”


Founded in 1980, the Right Livelihood Awards are presented annually in the Swedish Parliament and are often referred to as “Alternative Nobel Prizes”. They were introduced “to honour and support those offering practical and exemplary answers to the most urgent challenges facing us today”. There are now 162 Right Livelihood Award Recipients from 67 countries.

Sima Samar received the Right Livelihood Award in 2012 for “her longstanding and courageous dedication to human rights, especially the rights of women, in one of the most complex and dangerous regions in the world.”


Sharan Srinivas,
Programme and Research Manager,
[email protected]

Updated On: 30 October, 2015