Kabul, Afghanistan – Female students were banned from attending private and public universities in Afghanistan immediately and until further notice, said a Taliban government spokesman on Tuesday in the latest decree demanding women’s rights and freedoms.
Despite initially promising more moderate governance that respected the rights of women and minorities, the Taliban widely enforced their strict interpretation of Islamic law.
they have Girls were banned from middle school and high schooland restricted women from most jobs and ordered them to do so To dress from head to toe in public. women too Banned from parks and gyms.
A US-led coalition toppled the Taliban in 2001 for harboring al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and returned to power after America’s chaotic departure last year.
The decision was announced after a government meeting. A letter sent by the Ministry of Higher Education spokesperson, Ziaullah Hashmi, demanded that private and public universities implement the ban as soon as possible and inform the ministry once the ban is implemented.
Hashemi tweeted the message and confirmed its content in a letter to the Associated Press, without giving further details.
The decision is sure to hurt the Taliban’s efforts to win recognition from potential international donors at a time when the country is mired in a deepening humanitarian crisis. The international community has urged Taliban leaders to reopen schools and grant women their right to public spaces.
The university ban comes weeks after the Afghan girls took high school graduation exams, despite being barred from classes since the Taliban seized control of the country last year.
A third-year student of journalism and communication at Nangarhar University said, “I can’t make my dreams come true, my hopes. Everything is disappearing before my eyes and I can’t do anything about it.” She did not want to reveal her identity for fear of reprisals.
She added, “Is it a crime to be a girl? If so, I wish I wasn’t a girl.” “My father had a dream for me that his daughter would become a talented journalist in the future. This is devastating now. So, tell me, how would a person feel in this situation?”
She added that she had not lost hope yet.
“God willing, I will continue my studies in any way. I will start studying online. If it doesn’t work out, I will have to leave the country and go to another country,” she said.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the decision, calling it “another broken promise” by the Taliban and a “deeply troubling” step.
“It is difficult to imagine how a country can develop, and deal with all the challenges it faces, without the active participation of women and education,” said Guterres.
Robert Wood, the US deputy ambassador to the United Nations, said the Taliban cannot expect to be a legitimate member of the international community until they respect the rights of all Afghans.
Afghanistan’s seat in the United Nations is still occupied by the previous government led by former President Ashraf Ghani, despite the Taliban’s request to represent the country in the United Nations, which was recently postponed again.
Afghan Chargé d’Affaires Naseer Ahmad Faiq at the United Nations said the declaration “represents a new low in violation of the most basic and universal human rights of all mankind.”
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