(Kabul) Afghan schools reopened their doors on Tuesday for the new school year, but due to a lack of communication by the Taliban authorities, the students did not go to the establishments, which are still prohibited for adolescent girls, AFP journalists noted.
The Taliban authorities decided to resume primary and secondary classes on Tuesday, but due to the absence of a public announcement, the students did not make the trip, AFP journalists found after visiting seven schools from Kabul.
“A letter from the Minister of Education was given to us by our principal, but since no public announcement was made, no students came,” said Mohammad Osman Atayi, a teacher at a boys’ high school in Kabul. .
Schools have also reopened in the provinces of Herat, Kunduz, Ghazni and Badakhshan, but no classes have been held there either, AFP correspondents reported.
For the second year in a row, hundreds of thousands of teenage girls aged around 11 to 18 are still expected to be denied access to secondary schools, as Taliban authorities never mentioned lifting the ban.
On March 23, 2022, just hours after the reopening of secondary schools, which had been communicated for a long time, the authorities announced that teenage girls were no longer allowed to go there.
However, some girls’ institutions have since remained open in provinces away from the centers of power, Kabul and Kandahar, due to pressure from families and tribal leaders.
“I’m depressed and broken,” said 15-year-old Sadaf Haidari. “Education is our fundamental right. We have to go to school… but the Taliban took everything from us.”
The Taliban authorities had claimed that the ban, which does not concern primary school, was only temporary and that classes would resume once a program, based on Islamic precepts, had been defined.
According to some Taliban officials, the ultra-conservative clerics who advise Afghanistan’s supreme leader, Hibatullah Akhundzada, are deeply skeptical of modern education for women.
In December, the authorities even extended the ban to universities, which after the winter break reopened to men two weeks ago.
The United Nations Mission in Afghanistan (Manua) on Tuesday urged authorities to reverse their decisions: “Manua reiterates its call on the de facto authorities to reverse all discriminatory policies against women and girls.” .
Despite their promises to be more flexible than during their first reign (1996-2001), the Taliban have increased their repressive measures, particularly against women.
These have been excluded from many public jobs, or are paid a pittance to stay at home. In November, they also banned them from entering parks, gardens, sports halls and public baths.