Kabul, July 17: Several Afghans are voicing a clarion call for the immediate reopening of senior secondary schools for girls in Afghanistan on Sunday. The citizens demanded the reopening of girls’ schools and said that their closure will lead the country towards a “dark future,” TOLO News reported.
“Islam provides the right of education and works for women the same as men,” said resident Umm-ul-Banin. “We ask the Islamic Emirate not to politicise the issue of schools. Women are half of society. A generation will become illiterate if schools remain closed,” said Kabul resident Rubaba. Afghanistan Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani Calls on US to Release USD 7 Billion Frozen Funds.
Several female students raised concerns over the ban on their senior secondary education and mentioned that they are really worried about their future.
“We ask the government to provide us with the rights that Almighty Allah has given to us. Education will help us to improve,” a student said as quoted by the local media.
However, the Ministry of Education refrained from commenting on the issue. The ministry previously stated that a nine-member committee was formed for the reopening of girls’ schools, but the committee did not report any progress till now.
The Taliban took over Afghanistan in August 2021 and imposed policies severely restricting basic rights–particularly those of women and girls. They dismissed all women from leadership posts in the civil service and prohibited girls in most provinces from attending secondary school. According to HRW, Taliban decrees prohibit women from travelling unless accompanied by a male relative and require women’s faces to be covered in public–including women TV newscasters.
The Taliban have carried out broad censorship, limiting critical reporting, and have detained and beaten journalists. Taliban forces have carried out revenge killings and enforced disappearances of former government officials and security force personnel.
On September 18, 2021, a month after taking over the country, the Taliban ordered the reopening of boys’ secondary schools but made no mention of girls’ secondary schools. This was interpreted as a ban on girls’ secondary education. In several provinces, under community pressure, Taliban officials allowed girls’ secondary schools to reopen, but the vast majority of these schools remained closed.
On March 21, 2022, the Taliban pledged to reopen all schools on March 23, but on that date, they closed girls’ secondary schools again. An indefinite ban remains in place with no clarity about when or if these schools will reopen. The ban was implemented 302 days ago.
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