Taliban backtrack on reopening girls’ schools

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On Wednesday, however, a ministry notice said the girls’ schools would remain shut until a plan was drawn up in accordance with the Islamic law and Afghan culture…reports Asian Lite News

The Taliban has ordered the secondary girls schools in Afghanistan to shut just hours after they reopened, saying they would remain closed until a plan was drawn up in accordance with the Islamic law for them to reopen, RFE/RL reported.

The Taliban Education Ministry said last week that schools for all students, including girls, would open across the country on March 23 after months of restrictions on education for high-school girls.

A ministry spokesman on Tuesday (March 22) released a video welcoming all students back to class.

On Wednesday, however, a ministry notice said the girls’ schools would remain shut until a plan was drawn up in accordance with the Islamic law and Afghan culture, government news agency Bakhtar News reported.

“We inform all girls’ high schools and those schools that are having female students above Class six that they are off until the next order,” said the notice.

Taliban spokesman Inamullah Samangani confirmed the validity of the order.

Even before the Taliban backtracked on its announcement, the Human Rights Watch (HRW) had expressed scepticism about the Taliban’s determination to allow girls to go back to school.

“The Taliban’s pledge to allow all girls’ secondary schools in Afghanistan to reopen on March 23, 2022, needs careful monitoring,” HRW said on Tuesday, RFE/RL reported.

“Taliban statements are often very different from Taliban actions,” said HRW’s Heather Barr. “No one should believe that the Taliban has stopped blocking girls from secondary education until the evidence from the ground shows that to be the case.”

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