Afghan universities under Taliban rule separate male and female students with curtain

Despite the scenes filmed inside the university, Islamic law does not require the separation of women from all men except close family members

Male and female students are separated by gray fabric curtains in the classroom (

Image: via REUTERS)

While university studies are resuming in Afghanistan under Taliban rule, an image has emerged showing male and female students separated by a curtain in the middle of a classroom.

Pictures from a university in Kabul show men and women sitting opposite each other, gray fabric curtains hanging as a partition in the middle of the room.

The pictures allegedly come from a course at Ibn-e-Sina University.

Despite the scenes filmed inside the university, Islamic law does not require the separation of women from all men except close family members.

However, it shows in the traditional behavior of the rural Pashtuns, who traditionally separated women who have reached puberty from men.

After the takeover by the Taliban last month, the representative Suhail Shaheen told Sky News that women can work and be trained up to university.

Students attend classes under new classroom conditions at Avicenna University in Kabul
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Image:

about REUTERS)

Describing the organization’s stance on women’s freedom, he continued, “Our policy is clear – they can have access to education and work, that’s one thing.

“They can hold positions, but the position they can hold is in the light of Islamic rule – so there is a general framework for them.”

But within days of his return to power there was claims that women have been turned away of jobs and universities in some parts of the country.

Many women wore burqas and were among those who wanted to flee the country for fear of Taliban rule.

The Gharjistan University pictured after the reopening of private universities in Kabul on Monday
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Image:

AFP via Getty Images)

Heather Barr of Human Rights Watch, told The Independent : “Women are told that without a mahram, a male member of the family, they cannot leave their home. Women are being pushed out of their jobs.

“These are women who work as professionals and have a long training.”

In a speech in August, Suhail Shaheen said “thousands” of schools would continue to operate.

Male and female students are separated in the classroom by a curtain hung in the middle
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Image:

about REUTERS)

But women’s education was banned under the rule of the Taliban in the 1990s, and its adoption last month has raised fears that it will revive its old reign of terror.

At a press conference on Monday, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said that women are an “important” part of society.

Women’s rights are respected under Sharia or Islamic law, he said, although officials had not yet elaborated on what that meant.

In 2017, a Human Rights Watch report estimated that two-thirds of Afghan girls were out of school.

The streets of Mazar-e-Sharif in Afghanistan’s Balkh province were flooded Monday by Afghan women protesting the Taliban’s treatment of women and calling on the group to protect women’s human rights.

Photos from the city showed emotional scenes with women holding signs reportedly calling for another right to education and decent work.

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