HomeInternationalAfghan Girls Want To Return To School Amid Taliban Rule

Afghan Girls Want To Return To School Amid Taliban Rule


Afghan teenager Amena saw dozens of classmates killed when her girls’ college was targeted by an ISIS bomb attack in May, but she was determined to continue her education.

Now, like most secondary college girls in the nation, she is banned from lessons altogether following the Taliban’s hardline regime excluded them from returning to class one month ago.

“I wanted to study, see my friends and have a bright future, but now I am not allowed,” 16-year-old Amena told AFP at her home in western Kabul.

“This situation makes me feel awful. Since the Taliban arrived, I am very sad and angry.”

On September 18, Afghanistan’s new Islamist rulers ordered male teachers and boys aged 13 and more than back to secondary schools, selecting up an academic year currently reduce brief by violence and the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, there was no mention of females teachers or girl pupils.

The Taliban later stated older girls can return to secondary schools, which had been currently largely split by gender, but only as soon as safety and stricter segregation below their interpretation of Islamic law could be ensured.

Reports have emerged of girls going back to a couple of higher schools — such as in Kunduz province exactly where the Taliban promoted the return with a stage-managed rally.

A Taliban leader told the UN children’s body that a framework to permit all girls to go to secondary college will be announced quickly, a senior UNICEF executive stated Friday.

But for now, the vast majority are barred from lessons across the nation of about 39 million individuals, such as in the capital Kabul.

Primary schools, meanwhile, have reopened for all children and females can go to private universities, although with difficult restrictions on their clothing and movement.

‘No hope’

Amena lives just a brief stroll from her Sayed Al-Shuhada High School, exactly where 85 individuals — primarily young girls — perished in the May bomb attack.

“Innocent girls were killed,” Amena stated, her eyes welling up.

“I saw with my own eyes the dying and wounded girls. However, I still wanted to go to school again.”

Amena would be in Grade 10 studying her favourite subjects such as biology, but alternatively is stuck inside with a handful of books undertaking “nothing special”.

The teenager stated she dreamt of becoming a journalist, but now has “no hope in Afghanistan”.

Her siblings assistance her at home, and sometimes she gets lessons from a psychologist who comes to see her younger sister, nevertheless traumatised by the college attack.

“They say: ‘Study if you cannot go to school — study at home so that you may become someone in the future.’,” stated Amena.

“My brother brings home storybooks and I read them,” Amena stated. “And I always watch the news.”

But she does not fully grasp why boys are permitted to study and girls are not.

“Half of the society is made up of girls and the other half is made up of boys. There is no difference between them,” she stated.

“Why can’t we study? Are we not part of society? Why should only boys have a future?”

Recent progress

After US-led forces ousted the Taliban in 2001, progress was made in girls’ education.

The quantity of schools tripled and female literacy practically doubled to 30 per cent, but the modify was largely restricted to the cities.

“Afghan women have made great achievements in the past 20 years,” stated Nasrin Hasani, a 21-year-old teacher at a Kabul secondary college who now aids out with key pupils.

But the present scenario has “lowered both our and the students’ morale”, she stated, questioning the Taliban’s reasoning.

“As far as we all know, the religion of Islam has never hindered the education and work of women.”

Hasani stated she has not skilled any direct threats from the Taliban.

But Amnesty International reported that one higher college teacher received death threats and was summoned for prosecution mainly because she used to teach co-educational sport.

Hasani stated she was clinging to hope that the Taliban will be “a little different” from their brutal 1996-2001 regime, when females had been not even permitted out of their residences unchaperoned.

Buried dreams

Born years following 2001, Zainab has no memories of that period and loved going to college till the Taliban directive.

The 12-year-old was stuck seeking out of the window with a “terrible feeling” last month when boys went back to college.

“It is quite obvious that things get worse day by day”, stated Zainab, whose name has been changed to safeguard her identity.

Her 16-year-old sister Malalay stated tearfully that she had “feelings of despair and fear”.

Malalay, whose name has also been changed, passes her time assisting about the residence, cleaning, washing dishes and undertaking laundry.

She stated she tries not to cry in front of her mother “because there are a lot of pressures on her”.

The teen had dreams of advertising women’s rights and speaking out against the males depriving her of her rights.

“My rights are to go to school and university,” she stated. “All my dreams and plans are now buried.”


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