The Duchess of Cornwall has spoken up for female journalists in Afghanistan at a Women in Journalism event at Dumfries House, calling for support and promotion of those risking their lives to report the news in the Middle East.
Camilla and her husband, Prince Charles, have been undertaking engagements in Scotland, this week as the summer holidays wind down. Earlier on September 9th 2021, they unveiled a knitted art installation at one of their Scottish properties.
Camilla attended a mentoring session hosted by the Women in Journalism UK organisation and spoke with BBC journalist Yalda Hakim, who recently interviewed a Taliban spokesman on air when he called her direct line during a broadcast.
“Before you all go your different ways, I just wanted to say what a pleasure it has been, for a few very brief moments, sitting down and talking to you all. I wish I had more time to talk to you all individually and see exactly what you’re doing – but I think I have got the gist, listening to your conversations and seeing what is being achieved with Women in Journalism.
“I hope you enjoyed your tour around Dumfries House, I hope you got around the gardens without getting soaking wet! It is rather incredible what is being achieved here. I’ve seen it from the very beginning and now what it is doing for the local communities is quite astounding – and for young people getting into different careers. I hope you’ve learnt just a little bit about my husband’s vision here.
“Before I go, I just wanted to say one thing which I think is extremely important at the moment, especially with what is going on in Afghanistan and the women journalists who are working there. It’s been a particular pleasure to speak to Yalda Hakim, who recently interviewed a Taliban spokesman with such focus and composure.
“I’ve been reliable informed that in 2020, there were 700 female journalists working in Kabul. Today, there are fewer than 100. With the loss of 600 voices, the experiences of countless Afghans will remain untold.
“All journalists who fight for truth and justice in the face of retribution deserve our thanks and admiration. Let’s do all we can to support, promote and, crucially, listen to the brave female journalists of Afghanistan, whose work puts them in danger every single day.”