Taliban oppression escalates, destroying women’s lives in Afghanistan

Taliban oppression escalates, destroying women’s lives in Afghanistan | DW News

In a new report titled “Death in Slow Motion,” human rights group Amnesty International says the “suffocating crackdown against Afghanistan’s female population is increasing day by day.” The most visible part of this crackdown is in Afghanistan’s schools.

The taliban have systematically
destroyed the rights of women and girls
across afghanistan since seizing power
nearly a year ago the hardline group
have mostly excluded females from public
life they have ordered women to cover
themselves from head to toe they have
denied them representation in the
cabinet and they routinely torture and
threaten women in a new report titled
death in slow motion leading rights
group amnesty international says and i
quote taken together these policies form
a system of repression that
discriminates against women and girls in
almost every aspect of their lives this
suffocating crackdown against
afghanistan’s female population is
increasing day by day
the most visible part of this crackdown
is in afghanistan’s schools where girls
can be seen only up to the primary level
the taliban have forbidden them from
studying further it’s a dictat that’s
crushing dreams every day
it’s been more than 300 days since alaha
and ohama have been forced to study at
home
the sisters have been waiting for their
secondary schools to reopen
but their wish has not come true
every girl’s allowed to school and they
will education but that’s not true now
i don’t understand
only primary school girls are allowed to
go to school under the taliban
while the regime keeps saying secondary
schools will reopen
teachers believe it’s just an empty
promise intended to keep women and girls
quiet
a view shared by the um
afghanistan is the only country in the
world where girls are banned from going
to high school
women are restricted
from working outside the home except for
a few sectors and particular
roles there are no women in cabinet
and there’s no ministry of women’s
affairs
effectively removing
women’s rights political participation
the taliban has also ordered women to
cover themselves from head to toe and
told them they can only leave home with
a male relative
according to the latest report by human
rights watchdog amnesty international
women who protested against taliban
rules were threatened detained and
tortured
they also reported forced early and
child marriage
and the magnitude and severity of these
rights violations are increasing month
by month
it’s been 344 days since the taliban
took power
and for most afghan women and girls
almost every one of these days has
brought a deterioration in our rights
their condition
and their social and political status
stuck at home alaha and ohama do chores
regularly a scene that the taliban want
to see most but every day like this is a
reminder to the sisters that life is not
in their hands anymore
and joining me now for more is pastana
durani she’s executive director of learn
afghanistan a non-profit focused on
girls education and health she’s
currently a visiting fellow at the
wellesley centers for women in
massachusetts and joins me now from
there mr rani
how would you describe the environment
for women and girls in afghanistan today
well for starters the
public space for a women in afghanistan
has been shrinking everything that you
would say that was an access to freedom
or rights right now has been
disabled or has been erased from the
society of afghanistan
do you think
that there is
any possibility that this space that has
been shrunk for women and girls
could potentially open up in an
afghanistan under the taliban
i wouldn’t expect that from the taliban
but given that they do interact with the
international community and
international community does hold a
certain amount of power when it comes to
uh legitimacy political aid and uh
financial aid i think there might be
chances that would be pushed on the
taliban that they might open up spaces
for the women of afghanistan you know
just on that point there isn’t any
international organization that i can
think of that hasn’t condemned the
taliban for the manner in which they are
treating women and girls but nothing
seems to be changing on the ground do
you think all that criticism is
meaningless
it could be very well sitting in your
own air-conditioned uh conference room
condemning the taliban while in person
you are not doing anything including the
fact that women cannot still have access
to working rights educational rights
walking mobilizing socializing and
traveling right so a tweet or
contamination doesn’t necessarily mean
you are an ally to our one woman when in
person you haven’t pushed your
government to done to do anything or
anything of that sort
in reality given this uh performance if
i can call it that way from the
international community do you think
that the international community is
actually serious about trying to make
the situation better for women and girls
and do you worry that the international
community could potentially compromise
on their rights for eventual i don’t
know recognition of the taliban regime
yes there are parts of international
community who are big time allowing for
aligning with the taliban regime taking
pictures with them not questioning them
on whatsoever so those are two different
things that we are seeing right now but
we do see that there are opposing forces
like the european union commissioner who
questioned the taliban every time they
kept on tweeting he kept on quoting
those tweets and kept on asking when
will the schools open when will the
women go back to work but then at the
same time we see a u.n representative
deborah lyons who was in afghanistan
kept on taking pictures with them kept
on being lenient for a whole year
without asking results so those are two
different things but that is happening
in the international community what
should the international community be
doing to get the results that everybody
wants
i mean for starters let’s ask the
special onward for afghanistan
the two special owners for afghanistan
right now from the us um
except engaging with our fun female
activists what else have they done and
even if you’re putting together a whole
action group why is it taking so much
long why are you not interacting with
them much if you’re interacting with a
taliban yourself why are you not making
sure that the women of afghanistan are
also talking to them those are all
different things that they could be
doing right now but instead
i see all the tweets i see them
interacting with the taliban i see the
fact that everyone is
trying to warm up to the taliban and
trying to make sure to work with them as
allies instead of thinking that they’re
releasing not only the 50 percent of
afghanistan which is the women and the
girls but also people who work in civil
society also people who have worked in
the workforce or in the army or in the
police anything that wouldn’t align with
the taliban are under threat right now
do you think afghan women themselves
have been marginalized when it comes to
dealing with the rights that concern
them and
the other girls that are
girls and women that are left in
afghanistan that they are not being able
to deal with the taliban directly and
the international community is doing it
for them
i mean yeah let’s let’s look at it like
this um an afghan american with an uh us
passport can go back home you can see
that on twitter there are a lot of women
doing that right now fyi
and they can interact with the taliban
actually and they are protected under
that passport uh whereas any woman who
carries another passport or has actively
worked up until the last year
is under a different is a scene under a
different lens
she’s not welcome the same way she’s not
talked to the same way she’s not
interrupted with the same way she’s not
protected under the same laws or the
same privileges i would say so those are
two different things yes afghan women
who carry the afghan passport right now
are definitely marginalized they are not
interacted with and those uh family
members who are left behind are also
under the same threat they are not seen
as
important enough politically to interact
with uh i’d like to talk about an area
uh that you have uh worked in quite a
lot girls education um and you talked
about 50 of the population at least it
was 50 of the population that are women
in afghanistan or at least used to be
what does it mean for afghanistan’s
future if
women and girls don’t have access to
quality education in the fields of
medicine and science for instance
afghanistan right now if they have
if they had a grade 12
graduate in the past one year they would
be enrolled in a midwifery school this
year and they would be graduating in the
next two years in the next two years you
will see that one population growing but
you won’t see a midwife meeting that
requirement in the next five to eight
years you won’t see a special doctor or
specialist doctor for to meet that
demand but the population will continue
to grow in the next uh whole decade you
will see that we will need accountants
we will need teachers we will need
doctors we will need engineers we’ll
need every sort of workforce that is
needed but you will not see that we will
be meeting the requirement because there
will be a break of
the circle and there won’t be enough
graduates graduating from these programs
so we won’t be meeting our quota for the
needs of the population
of the running we’ll have to leave it
there for the time being but uh great
having you on the program thank you so
much for sparing your time for
us of course thank you for having me
as we have heard the taliban has
effectively banned girls from going to
secondary school but they’re still
allowing younger females to be educated
we went to a school for pneumatic
children in the east of afghanistan to
hear how the girls there are faring and
also what they expect from the future
in this mobile primary school many girls
are studying hard
they cannot take education for granted
as a coochie nomad and now
as a female under the taliban rule
[Music]
we have a tent school here hundreds of
coochie girls like me study here
the taliban will only allow girls to
study until the fifth grade
that means none of them will be able to
get the academic qualifications needed
to go on to higher education
dimming their prospects of success
and also defeating the aims of the
founder of the school
our goal was to bridge the gap that
remained due to the coochie nomadic
lifestyle
both boys and girls receive education
and makeshift schools also move with
them
the tents have adapted to their
wandering lifestyle
the founder says as the political
situation worsens in afghanistan she and
the teachers couldn’t let the kids grow
without being educated
and this is especially true for the
kuchi girls
many of them have high aspirations
i want to become a doctor when i grow up
but unless the taliban lifts
restrictions on female education there’s
no chance that this girl or any of those
at the nomadic school and the millions
across afghanistan will be able to
fulfill their dreams
[Music]

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