The taliban administration in Afghanistan has ordered all local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to prevent their employees from going to work, according to a letter from the Ministry of Economy sent to all authorized NGOs.
Failure to comply will result in the revocation of the licenses of said NGOs, the ministry said.
The ministry in the letter – whose validity was confirmed to CNN by its spokesman Abdul Rahman Habib – cites as reasons for the decision the non-observance of the Islamic dress code and other laws and regulations of the Islamic Emirate.
“Recently there have been serious complaints about the non-compliance with the Islamic hijab and other laws and regulations of the Islamic Emirates,” the letter says, adding that, as a result, “guidance is given to suspend the work of all female employees of non-governmental organizations National and international. .”
Earlier this week, the Taliban government suspended college education for all female students in Afghanistan.
Asman of the Afghan Ministry of Higher Education confirmed the university’s suspension to CNN on Tuesday. A letter released by the Education Ministry said the decision was made at a cabinet meeting and the order would take effect immediately.
In a televised press conference on Thursday, the Taliban’s higher education minister said they had expelled women from universities for failing to observe Islamic dress rules and other “Islamic values”, citing female students traveling without a male guardian. The movement sparked outrage among women in Afghanistan.
Mark one more step in the brutal crackdown on Afghan women’s freedoms by the Taliban, following the hardline Islamist group’s takeover of the country in August 2021.
The United Nations condemned the Taliban’s announcement on Saturday.
“Women must be allowed to play a pivotal role in all aspects of life, including humanitarian response. Banning women from working would violate women’s most fundamental rights, as well as being a clear violation of humanitarian principles,” the UN statement read.
“This latest decision will only further harm the most vulnerable, especially women and girls.”
He also added that he would try to get a meeting with the Taliban leadership to seek clarity.
Amnesty International called for the ban to be “rescinded immediately” and for the Taliban to “stop abusing their power.”
“Women and girls must not be punished for demanding and defending their fundamental rights,” she said in a statement. “The right to work for all people, especially women in Afghanistan, must be fully realized in accordance with international human rights law.”
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken also spoke on Saturday. “Deeply concerned that the Taliban’s ban on women delivering humanitarian aid in Afghanistan will disrupt life-saving and vital assistance to millions,” he wrote on Twitter.
“Women are critical to humanitarian operations around the world. This decision could be devastating for the Afghan people.”
The US special representative in Afghanistan, Thomas West, tweeted on Saturday that the latest order from the Taliban is “deeply irresponsible.”
“It poses deadly risks for millions of people who depend on life-saving assistance. The Taliban are ignoring their most basic responsibilities to their people,” West tweeted.
Although the Taliban have repeatedly claimed they would protect the rights of girls and women, they have actually done the opposite, stripping away the hard-won freedoms they have tirelessly fought for over the past two decades.
Some of its most striking restrictions have been related to education, with girls being banned from returning to secondary school in March. The move devastated many students and their families, who described to CNN his frustrated dreams to become doctors, teachers or engineers.
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