The worries over how women will be treated under the Taliban are still very present. Recently, women were barred from entering the Ministry of Women’s Affairs in Kabul. Then, the Taliban closed and replaced the Women’s Affairs Ministry with the “Ministry for Preaching and Guidance and the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice.”

Present generations can still recall the harsh rule of the Taliban, before US forces showed up, with regular stoning, amputations, and public executions. Women were also primarily confined to their homes and forced to wear completely modest apparel. Now, women are living in fear of going back to living with those kinds of limitations once more.

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During the first movements of the US army from Kabul, the Taliban had words of encouragement for women. Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said, “Taliban are committed to providing women with their rights based on Islam. Women can work in the health sector and other sectors where they are needed. There will be no discrimination against women.”

Now that the Taliban is in full power, they have revisited their past promises and gone back on their word by removing women from government positions and segregating classrooms. They have also started to enforce dress codes for women. 

The future of women in Afghanistan is very uncertain, and many are trying to step up to defend their rights.

The Ministry of Women’s Affairs is just one more instance of women losing their rights and recognition as human beings. What’s next?

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