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Human Rights Watch urges international community to press Taliban on women’s rights

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has urged the international community to put more pressure on the Taliban to end their violations of women’s rights.

In a post on X on Friday, HRW said that the Taliban had blocked 63 women from boarding flights to Dubai to pursue their higher education.

“The international community should do more to press the Taliban to end their violations of women’s rights,” HRW stated.

On Wednesday, around 100 female students were prevented by the Taliban from boarding a plane bound for the United Arab Emirates (UAE), where they intended to pursue higher education at the University of Dubai.

The female students had been granted scholarships by a UAE businessman, Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor, and the University of Dubai. They had been provided with university admission, accommodations, transportation, health insurance, and other comprehensive services.

In a post on X on Wednesday, Al Habtoor said that the Taliban had prevented the students from traveling “without justification” and that this was “a profound tragedy and a blow against the principles of humanity, education, equality, and justice.”

He called on the Taliban and all involved parties to “quickly step in and help rescue and assist these struggling students.”

On Friday, Al Habtoor confirmed that three out of the 100 female students from Afghanistan who were awarded scholarships had arrived in Dubai on Thursday.

He expressed hope to welcome the rest of the students in Dubai soon.

The Taliban’s decision has led to widespread condemnation, with Amnesty International calling it a “flagrant violation of the right to education and freedom of movement.”

Naseer Ahmad Faiq, the Chargé d’Affaires of Afghanistan’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations, called the Taliban’s ban on women’s education “un-Islamic” and “deliberate to keep the people in darkness and ignorance.”

The Taliban has not yet commented on the matter.