13-16 June 2024

Zarifa Ghafari


In 2018, at the age of 24, Zarifa Ghafari became the youngest and one of the first female mayors of Afghanistan for Kabul’s Wardak province. During her time as mayor she focused on girls’ education, female emancipation and gender equality, while also fighting the mafia, corruption and tyranny, including against religious extremism. The target of three assassination attacks, she survived albeit with life-changing injuries, and the murder of her father by those attempting to dissuade her from taking office. Her remarkable story inspired both her eponymous memoir – and the Emmy Award-winning documentary film, IN HER HANDS. Zarifa is the recipient of many human rights awards, and continues to be a prominent spokesperson for her country, in particular for the women and girls still living there, and for the plight of those who, unlike her, were not able to escape after the US evacuation. She lives in exile in Germany.

All sessions by Zarifa Ghafari