(Photo Credits: Al Jazeera)
On 28 March, the Taliban-led government of Afghanistan announced that all airlines coming from the Islamic Emirates are to prevent women from traveling abroad without being accompanied by a male relative.
According to reports, dozens of women who arrived in Kabul Airport on 25 March ready to board transit flights, both international and domestic, were told by authorities that they could not board without the company of a male guardian.
According to aviation officials at Kabul Airport, this domestic policy was ratified on 24 March by Taliban officials and was ordered by the Vice Ministry of Afghanistan. The institution also issued a law that ensures that men and women are not allowed to visit parks on the same day.
An official of the ministry told AFP: “It is not the Islamic Emirate’s order but the order of our God that men and women who are strangers to each other should not gather at one place.”
This latest decision by the interim government came just days after the Taliban government ordered the temporary closure of high schools for girls, a move that has affected the trust and expectations of the international community.
Several nations have stated that their recognition of the Taliban administration is dependent upon their respect for all minority groups and women.
Iran and China have both expressed interest in normalizing relations with the Taliban but have also made it clear they are monitoring the Taliban’s adherence to their pledges as a condition for partnership, including becoming part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
In response to the high school closures for girls, two dozen women and school girls gathered in the city square of Kabul, demanding schools reopen and chanting “Open the schools! Justice, justice!”
Several women activists have said that if schools are not open within a week there will be nationwide protests.