Photo: Save the Children

Save the Children: Taliban’s ban on girls’ education will lead to rise in child marriages

As the new academic year approaches in Afghanistan, Save the Children has appealed to the Taliban to revoke the ban on female students and allow them to attend school. The organization has expressed grave concern over the denial of education to more than three million girls who were previously enrolled in secondary school since the Taliban’s takeover in August 2021.

Save the Children has warned that the ban and women and girls’ education will lead to a rise in child marriages and the depletion of future workforce, hampering the country’s future economic prosperity.

Save the Children’s Acting Country Director for Afghanistan, Olivier Franchi, said in a statement that “Afghanistan is the only country in the world that has banned girls above sixth grade from education, yet girls here are striving for a better future, and they know the best path to success is through school. When their education is cut short, they face increased risk of early marriage, violence, abuse and other forms of exploitation.” 

Olivier Franchi further added that “every day that girls are out of school is a wasted day – not only for them, but also for communities in desperate need of skilled doctors and teachers, and for the long-term economic development of the entire country.” 

He further emphasized the “critical importance” of girls not being left behind when schools gates reopen in the spring.