Amnesty International says Afghan women activists who are working to improve the human rights situation in their country face increased violence, including threats, sexual assault and assassinations.

In a report released Tuesday, the watchdog says both the Afghan government and the international community have abandoned the activists despite the gains they have made in the past decade.

Based on interviews with more than 50 women defenders and their relatives across the country, Amnesty says it found that Afghan authorities consistently ignore or refuse to act on threats against women.

Despite legal protections, Amnesty says that women rights workers who do report violence or attacks are put at further risk simply for speaking out.

The New York-based group urged the Afghan government to address the culture of impunity to stop abuses.