Kabul, Aug 13 (EFE).- The Taliban on Saturday opened fire to disperse a protest by Afghan women demanding the rights to education and work, just ahead of the first anniversary of the Islamists seizing power on Aug. 15, 2021.
“We were protesting today to raise our voice, but the Taliban came and began to fire to disperse the protesters, and (now) we are hiding in a pharmacy,” one of the protesters said in a video clip widely shared on social media.
The demonstrators had gathered in front of the education ministry in the capital, and other videos shared by activists showed people running with armed men in the background and gunshot sounds.
Since the Taliban takeover a year ago, Afghan women have came out on the streets time and again to protest against the ban on their access to work and the closure of girls’ secondary schools.
These protests are not approved by the regime, which has in the past arrested and assaulted demonstrators as well as the journalists covering the stirs.
The Taliban’s return to power on Aug. 15 last year has resulted in a major reversal of women’s rights in Afghanistan, as the Islamists have imposed a number of curbs on them.
The government had promised to reopen schools for girls aged between 12 and 18 after “adapting” them to Islamic law, but they have failed to act in this regard for a year now.
These restrictions have been widely criticized by the international community and human rights groups such as Amnesty International, which said in a report last week that Taliban’s “suffocating crackdown” was destroying the lives of Afghan women and girls.
The Taliban interim government has repeatedly insisted that these concerns are “unfounded,” and that the restrictions imposed on women and girls were within the “accepted religious and cultural framework” of the Muslim-majority Afghan society. EFE