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18th Aug 2021

Taliban ‘kill woman for not wearing burqa’ despite promise to protect women’s rights

Charlie Herbert

Taliban reported as killing Afghan women for not wearing a burqa

The killing reportedly took place on the same day as a news conference in which the Taliban said they would honour women’s rights.

A woman in Afghanistan was shot and killed by Taliban fighters for going out in public without wearing a burqa.

The incident comes as Taliban members have been ensuring that the organisation will be respecting women’s rights within sharia law and promising that things will be different to when they were last in power.

The militant Islamist group have taken full control of Afghanistan with their takeover of Kabul over the weekend and there are particular concerns around the world over what this means for women’s rights in the country.

Afghan women are required to wear a burqa under sharia law

When the group were last in power between 1996 and 2001, women were banned from working and weren’t allowed to leave their homes without wearing a burqa and being accompanied by a male.

On Tuesday, Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said in a news conference that the group would honour the rights “that Islam gave [women].” He added that women would be allowed to “work and study within out frameworks,” and would be “very active within our society.”

The BBC’s Sana Safi, who grew up in Afghanistan, suggested that “we are being fooled” and that the group’s reassurances are not only to calm simmering tensions from international authorities but to also seek foreign aid simultaneously.

To her point: on the same day, Fox News reports that a woman in Takhar province was shot and killed by Taliban fighter for going out in public without wearing a burqa.

There are also reports that Taliban members have been going door to door in neighbourhoods, targeting women.

An Afghan and former State Department contractor said that Taliban fighters had set up checkpoints throughout Kabul, and were beating civilians trying to escape the country.

He said: “There was kids, women, babies, old women, they could barely walk.

“They [are in a] very, very bad situation, I’m telling you. At the end, I was thinking that there was like 10,000 or more than 10,000 people, and they’re running into the airport.

“The Taliban [were] beating people and the people were jumping from the fence, the concertina wire, and also the wall.”

Whilst the Taliban have keen to paint themselves as a more progressive organisation than when they were previously in power, they have remained very vague about how exactly their treatment of women will differ this time round.

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