Female Singer Aired on Afghanistan’s Public Television

For the first time in over a decade, a video with footage of a famous Afghan female singer was broadcast on public television. According to BBC News, the footage is seen as a victory for moderates in Afghanistan. The footage of the female performer came just a few weeks after the approval of Afghanistan’s new constitution that endorses equal rights for women and men. “In the new constitution, men and women are given the same rights,” Deputy Culture and Information Minister Abdul Hamid Mubaiz told Reuters. “There should be no discrimination between man and woman. Therefore, we wanted to have them appear on television to give them the same rights as men.”

Afghanistan’s Supreme Court has protested the video, stating that they “are opposed to women singing and dancing as a whole…this is totally against the decision of the Supreme Court and it has to be stopped,” reports Reuters.

From 1992-1996, during Afghanistan’s civil war, the Islamic mujahadeen did not allow images of women to be broadcasted on television. When the Taliban came to power in 1996, they banned television altogether.

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BBC News 1/14/04, 1/13/03; Reuters 1/14/04; Associated Press 1/13/04

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