Meena among 60 Asian Heroes of Time Magazine

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Meena Keshwar Kamal, popularly known as Meena, the founder of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) has been listed among the "60 Asian Heroes" along with Mother Teresa, Dalai Lama, Kang Chol Hwan and others, in the Asian edition of Time Magazine. The magazine dedicated its November 13, 2006 special anniversary issue to pay "homage to the men and women who have shaped our destiny and our times."

Aryn Baker writes in her profile of Meena: "Although she was only 30 when she died, Meena had already planted the seeds of an Afghan women's rights movement based on the power of knowledge. She believed that if women were able to read and write, that if they could communicate and learn about the world, they would discover their own strength and could make a difference in their own society."

Meena established RAWA in 1977 to promotes women's rights and a secular democracy. The group opposed both the Soviet-supported regime and the later Mujahideen and Taliban Islamist rulers. After 10 years of struggle for women's rights, she was assassinated in Queeta of Pakistan on February 4, 1987 allegedly by the agents of Khadamat-e Etela'at-e Dawlati (KHAD), the secret police of the Soviet-supported regime in Afghanistan, which functioned under the control of the KGB.