Taliban Spokesperson in Turkey Calls Reopening Girls’ Schools Inevitable
Zabiullah Mujahid, the Taliban spokesperson in a meeting in Turkey, has once again said that reopening of schools for all girls in Afghanistan is inevitable. The girls in Afghanistan have been away from schools since the Taliban returned to power in August of last year.
Last year, he had promised that all girls’ schools would be reopened at the beginning of this solar year; but this promise was not fulfilled and girls above the sixth grade are currently banned from going to school.
It seems that the Taliban officials have different views about girls’ education.
Recently, Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai, the political deputy of the Taliban’s foreign ministry, in a ceremony held in Kabul, called for the reopening of girls’ schools and said that education is an absolute necessity for men and women. There is no Islamic law to ban girls’ schools, he noted at the ceremony.
However, Mohammad Khalid Hanafi, the Taliban’s minister of the of virtue and voice – in response to the words of Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai – said at the same ceremony that learning modern education is a permissible act.
On the other hand, keeping girls’ schools closed is said to be the decision of Mullah Hebatullah Akhundzadah, the leader of the Taliban. Some members of the group strongly support this decision.
However, Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, in his speech at the meeting of scholars in Turkey, said that the reopening of schools for all girls is essential and now the group is working on arranging the curriculum, transportation system, and a framework where boys and girls can continue their education in separate classes.
Last year, Taliban officials said that they are working on a plan to reopen girls’ schools; but the plan has yet to be finalized.
In the previous government, 70% of the citizens did not have access to education; but now all citizens in every corner of the country have the opportunity to learn education, claimed the Taliban’s spokesperson.
He added that tens of thousands of girls are studying in 140 universities in the country. Meanwhile, the Taliban have imposed severe restrictions on girls’ education. In this year’s Kankor (university entrance exam), this group has removed some courses, including engineering and journalism, for girls to choose to study at the universities.
It is worth mentioning that the Taliban, in their previous government in 1990s, did not allow girls and women to get education.
This group has currently banned women from working in majority of government offices.