‘This will have significant consequences’: US on Taliban govt’s move to ban university education for Afghan women

WASHINGTON: The United States has strongly reacted t the Taliban-led government in Afghanistan’s latest move banning university education for Afghan women, saying “this decision will have significant consequences for the Taliban and will further alienate them from the international community.” Addressing reporters on Tuesday, US State Department spokesman Ned Price said that Washington strongly condemns “the Taliban`s indefensible decision to ban women from universities”. The move will “have significant consequences for the Taliban and will further alienate the Taliban from the international community and deny them the legitimacy they desire”, Ned Price added.

“With the implementation of this decree, half of the Afghan population will soon be unable to access education beyond primary school,” he said.

Speaking at the UN Security Council, US Ambassador Robert Wood said, “The Taliban cannot expect to be a legitimate member of the international community until they respect the rights of all Afghans… Especially the human rights and fundamental freedom of women and girls.”



The reaction from President Joe Biden’s top officials came after a Taliban government spokesman said women are now banned from private and public universities in Afghanistan with immediate effect and until further notice.

The decision was announced after a meeting of the Taliban government. Despite initially promising a more moderate rule and women’s and minority rights, the Taliban have widely implemented their harsh interpretation of Islamic law or Sharia.

They have banned girls from middle school and high school, restricted women from most employment and ordered them to wear head-to-toe clothing in public. Women are also banned from parks and gyms.

A letter shared by the spokesman for the Ministry of Higher Education, Ziaullah Hashmi, tells private and public universities to implement the ban as soon as possible and to inform the ministry once the ban is in place.

The university ban comes weeks after Afghan girls took their high school graduation exams, even though they have been banned from classrooms since the Taliban took over the country last year. In March this year, Afghan girls were barred from returning to secondary schools after the Taliban ordered schools for girls to shut just hours after they were due to reopen following months-long closures imposed after the takeover.

Last month, the Taliban banned women were banned from going to parks in Kabul, claiming that Islamic laws were not being followed there.

(With Agency Inputs)

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