As weeks go by in Afghanistan, the Taliban’s new administration has yet to announce when it will reopen secondary schools for girls, leaving them at home while their brothers return to class. .
Ever since boys in classes above sixth were told to go back to school, the government says it is working on making it possible for girls to do so.
“My request to the Islamic Emirate is to allow girls to go to school,” Marwa, a Kabul student, used the word Taliban to describe her government. “Also (female) teachers should be allowed to go to school and teach girls.
He said, “I had dreamed of becoming a top doctor to serve my people, my country and my family and work in the community, but now it is not clear what my future will hold.”
The issue has become increasingly important as the rest of the world, whose aid Afghanistan desperately needs, tries to figure out whether the new Taliban government will give women and girls more freedom than they did last time in power.
“The Ministry of Education is working hard to provide land for the education of high school girls as soon as possible,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told a news conference on September 21.
The ministry put out a statement on its Facebook page on 24 September saying that no decision has been taken on when the girls will be able to go to school, but work is on on the issue and information will be shared as soon as possible.
Girls’ education and literacy rates, while still relatively low by world standards and well below boys’ rates, have risen sharply since the ouster of the previous Taliban government by a US-led campaign in the wake of the September 11 attacks .
But increasingly, foreign officials and rights activists, including UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai, are warning that one of the greatest social gains of the past 20 years may be at risk.
Faced with a potentially devastating economic crisis that would require large amounts of foreign aid, the movement has sought to present a conciliatory face in an effort to gain international recognition for its government.
Officials say they will not repeat the harsh regime that the previous Taliban government toppled in 2001, which banned the education of most girls and forbade women from going out in public without a male guardian.
They say that all rights of women and girls will be guaranteed according to Islamic law. But he did not specify when and on what conditions girls’ schools would be allowed to reopen.
“If our Taliban brothers want their government to be stable and the international community to recognize it, they should allow girls to study,” said Shaima Samih, 57, a math teacher from Kabul.