More than a year has passed since the Taliban regained control of Afghanistan. Over the past year, many regressive changes have taken place in the country, including the ban on women’s right to education. When this predictable disaster struck Afghanistan, the international community, including the United Nations, criticized the Taliban’s actions.
Recently, acting head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), Markus Potzel, said the continued exclusion of girls from secondary schools was unjustifiable and condemned the anniversary as tragic, shameful and avoidable.
“The continued exclusion of girls from school has no credible justification and is unparalleled anywhere in the world,” UNAMA said in a statement on the exclusion of girls, according to Khaama Press. Last year, on September 18, secondary schools in Afghanistan opened their gates to boys, while girls were ordered to stay home by the Taliban.
The Taliban pledges to educate women
The Taliban took power in Afghanistan in August 2021. At the time, the Taliban promised to establish a modern form of Islamic government that would respect women’s rights.
After the Taliban seized control in August 2021, they announced that education for boys and girls beyond the sixth grade would end; however, it will resume on March 23, 2022, the Afghan New Year.
When scores of eager female students arrived at their school, they were greeted by Taliban guards instead of teachers. It soon became clear that school gates in the country were closed to female students. In the following days, Taliban leaders in a sudden statement forbid girls from going to high school. Currently, millions of female students in the country are deprived of their basic right to education.
The Taliban announced the need to create a curriculum for women
The Taliban said more time was needed to revise the school curriculum to better reflect Islamic principles, and to create a female curriculum and school uniforms for women. In addition, the Taliban have decreed that women can only teach women’s courses at colleges and universities. It further stated that co-ed courses at the university were possible, but required a physical barrier separating students from students.
The Taliban further announced on September 17, 2021 that schools would reopen as planned, but the announcement only mentioned male schools. It turned out that no decision has been made regarding women’s education. On September 17, 2021, the Taliban announced that schools would reopen as scheduled, but they only mentioned male institutions. No decision about women’s education seems to have been made.
Even months later, despite international pressure and promised resources from the international community, on March 23, 2002, the Taliban leadership announced that schools for girls would not reopen.
Afghanistan has two private universities in addition to 17 public universities. Most of these universities and colleges accepted female students before the Taliban seized power in 2021. This is not the case now.
On the other hand, many women who were working before the Taliban took back Afghanistan also had to lose their jobs. When the Taliban came to power a year ago this month, they sent many women home from government jobs. They were not allowed to share offices with men. But here is Toba at a private workplace.
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