Taliban Imposes New Restrictions on Women in Afghanistan

The Taliban, an Islamic fundamentalist regime in Afghanistan, has imposed even greater restrictions on women. Currently, women in Afghanistan are forced to cover themselves from head-to-foot, may not go anywhere outside without a relative male accompanying them and cannot attend school. Windows in a house’s room which contains women must be colored black so no one can look inside.

Now the Taliban has also issued an order that women must avoid making noise with their feet when walking. In two memos written last week by the religious police, formerly known as the Department for Promoting Virtue and Preventing Vice, and sent to all local and international agencies, the Taliban also formalized rules that women can work only in the medical sector (they cannot take any senior positions). In the medical sector, women cannot enter wards where non-relative males are hospitalized. Native women also cannot ride in cars with foreign women, and that aid to women (who are increasingly destitute because of the ban on working) must be channeled through male relatives. Aid agencies trying to help women must also, “gain permission from the Department for Promoting Virtue and Preventing Vice to employ or assist women.”


Reuters -July 21,1997

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