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‘Men and women cannot work together’, says Taliban leader

Kabul: Senior Taliban leader Waheedullah Hashimi has made it clear that women will not be allowed to work alongside men in Afghanistan. He said that the Taliban will implement Shariah law in the country.

‘We have fought for almost 40 years to bring the sharia law system to Afghanistan. Shariah … does not allow men and women to get together or sit together under one roof. Men and women cannot work together. That is clear. They are not allowed to come to our offices and work in our ministries’, said Hashimi.

Hashimi said the ban on women would also apply to sectors like media and banking. But he said that women will be allowed to study and work in the education and medical sectors. ‘We will of course need women, for example in medicine, in education. We will have separate institutions for them, separate hospitals, separate universities maybe, separate schools, separate madrassas’, he said.

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Earlier Taliban spokesperson Sayed Zekrullah Hashimi had said that no women will be included in the cabinet. The Taliban leader said that women can’t be ministers, they should give birth.

Earlier another leader of the group had compared a woman without Hijab to a sliced melon. Earlier this week, the Taliban announced that only a woman teacher would be allowed to teach female students, but that if it was not possible, elderly males of excellent character might fill in. The Taliban had also ordered to separate classes based on gender, or at least separated by a curtain. Taliban has also imposed a ban on women to participate in sports. Ahmadullah Wasiq, deputy head of the Taliban’s cultural commission said that sports activities were not necessary for women.

As per a World Bank data, the female labour participation rate in Afghanistan is at 23%, it was  zero when the Taliban last ruled.



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