Afghanistan: Taliban announce new rules for female students

Afghanistan: Taliban announce new rules for female students

According to the Taliban, Afghan universities will be gender segregated, and a new dress code will be implemented.

Women would be allowed to study, but not alongside men, according to Higher Education Minister Abdul Baqi Haqqani.

He also stated that the subjects that students would be taught would be reviewed.

Between 1996 and 2001, women and girls were barred from attending schools and universities under Taliban rule.

The Taliban have stated that they will not prevent women from obtaining an education or working. However, since taking control on August 15, they have asked all women, with the exception of those in the public health sector, to stay away from work until the security situation improves.

The announcement of the higher education policy on Sunday comes a day after the Taliban raised their flag over the presidential palace, signaling the start of their administration. They took over the elected government a month ago.

The policy represents a significant departure from the accepted practice prior to the Taliban takeover. Female students were not required to follow a dress code, and universities were co-educational, with men and women studying alongside one another.

Mr. Haqqani, on the other hand, was unapologetic about the change. “We have no problems in ending the mixed-education system,” he said. “The people are Muslims and they will accept it.”

Some argue that the new rules will exclude women from education because universities lack the resources to offer separate classes. Mr Haqqani, on the other hand, insisted that there are enough female teachers and that if they are not available, alternatives will be found.

“It all depends on the university’s capacity,” he explained. “We can also use male teachers to teach from behind a curtain, or use technology.”

Girls and boys will be separated in primary and secondary schools, as is already the case in Afghanistan.

Women will be required to wear hijabs, but Mr Haqqani did not say whether additional face coverings would be required.

The newly appointed minister also stated that university subjects will be reviewed. He told reporters that the Taliban wanted to “create a reasonable and Islamic curriculum that is in line with our Islamic, national and historical values and, on the other hand, be able to compete with other countries”

The announcement follows a demonstration by women who support the Taliban’s gender policies at Kabul’s Shaheed Rabbani Education University yesterday.

Hundreds of women, most of whom wore black niqabs and carried small Taliban flags, listened to speeches praising the new regime and criticizing those involved in large demonstrations across the country demanding the protection of women’s rights.

Since the Taliban’s demise in 2001, enormous strides have been made in increasing education enrollment and literacy rates in Afghanistan, particularly among girls and women.

According to a recent UNESCO report, the number of girls enrolled in primary school increased from nearly zero to 2.5 million in the 17 years following Taliban control.

According to the report, female literacy has nearly doubled in a decade to 30 percent.

The Taliban’s new government has also abolished the Ministry of Women’s Affairs in favor of the Ministry of Vice and Virtue.

During the Taliban’s previous reign, the department was in charge of deploying religious police to the streets to enforce Sharia law. It became notorious for beating women for minor infractions such as immodest clothing and being outside without a male guardian.

In anticipation of the group’s return to power, many prominent professional women fled Afghanistan. Aryana Sayeed, the country’s biggest pop singer, flew out of the country on a US cargo plane, and famed film director Sahraa Karimi was evacuated to Ukraine.

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Afghanistan: Taliban announce new rules for female students