Women in Afghanistan are looking at an uncertain future after the Taliban captured the country. Yet, while many fled the country, stopped going to work, and hid their documents, some fearless female journalists went back to work and even interviewed members of the Taliban despite the visible threats.
On Tuesday, the Taliban “vowed” to respect women’s rights that were “within the norms of Islamic law.” They encouraged women to return to work and allowed girls to return to school while handing out Islamic headscarves at the door, reported TIME.
A few days later, an Afghan woman journalist named Shabnam Dawran claimed that she was barred from working at her TV station, even though her male colleagues were allowed.
India Today quoted her saying:
“I work in state-run news organization RTA Pashto. After the Taliban took over Kabul, I went to my office the next morning where I was told to not come to work. When I asked what the reason was, they said the rules have now changed and women are not allowed to work in RTA anymore.”
Shabnam claimed that while women working at private firms are still going to work, those working at government organizations have been barred. According to The Hindu, the Taliban earlier had urged women to join the government.
Shabnam went on to add:
“When they announced earlier that women would be allowed to study and go to work, I got excited. But then I experienced the reality in my office where I was told that women won’t be allowed to work. I showed them my identity cards, but still, they asked me to go home. They said, ‘Tum ladki ho, jao apne ghar jao (You are a woman, go home now).’ My male colleague was allowed to go to work, but I was not. They clearly said that women won’t be allowed to work in RTA anymore.”
“We all had an idea about what could happen to women if the Taliban came to power again. But after that interview, we thought things might be different. However, what the Taliban are doing with the government media is not good.”
In a video that has gone viral, Shamnam is seen wearing a hijab, showing her office card, and saying ‘Our lives are under threat.
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