10 Surprising Facts About Taliban & Women.

  10 Surprising Facts About Taliban & Women.

We're going to be exploring 10 Surprising and Interesting Facts About The Taliban in Relation to Women and   Women's Rights. So, we're looking at women's rights prior to the first regime of the Taliban, as well as during the first regime, and after, because now,   a new regime has been established. Okay, so starting off with fact number 10. Let's look at women and the first regime. When the first Taliban regime last ruled Afghanistan, from the year 1996 - 2001,   women could not vote or work. Girls were not allowed to attend school, and women had to be fully covered and be accompanied by a male relative outside of their homes. And as of the year 1998,   girls over the age of 8 years old had been prohibited from attending school. Homeschooling,   while it was sometimes tolerated, it was something that was sort of frowned upon either way. And women were also prohibited from studying at the University of Kabul. Women were also given limited access to health care and medical care, thereby endangering the health of women and in turn,   their families. In most hospitals, male physicians could only examine a female patient if she were fully clothed, so accurate diagnoses and treatments were often completely missed. Now, for fact number  9 - We got to look at the new regime and its promises.

 According to "The Times,"  in an interview published on August 18th, 2021, the new regime vowed to respect women's rights, and forgive those who fought them and promote safety. In an interview Mr. Zabihullah Mujahid, the Taliban spokesman promised the Taliban would honor women's rights within the norms of Islamic law,   without elaborating further. The new regime has encouraged women to return to work and has allowed girls to return to school. Now, in this new regime the Taliban have sought to portray themselves as being more moderate, but the U.S National Security adviser, Jake Sullivan said that "The   U.S and other governments will not necessarily simply take the Taliban at their word. When it comes to women's rights, they want to see how they actually implement these laws. Next up, let's look at women in the government. By the year 2020, 21% of Afghan civil servants were women, compared with almost none during the Taliban years.

 16% of them were in senior management levels, and 27% of Afghan members of parliament were women. More recently, as of 2021, formal negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban finally started. In September. The Afghan government has appointed a 21-member negotiating team that includes 5Afghan women. Afghanistan's President, Ashraf Ghani,   also established the "High Council For National Reconciliation," which is a higher supervisory body to monitor and direct the negotiating team. Out of 46 appointed members, 9 of them are women.   So, it's no surprise that most Afghan commentators interpreted this as marginalizing Afghan women,   and only giving them representation in reserved seats and that this reflects a 2001 Afghanistan power structure, dominated by warlords and tribal elders. There are also no female representatives on the Taliban's negotiating team. Moving on to number 7.  The women appointed to the two government bodies I mentioned earlier are urban educated women, and some of whom held government positions and others who are members of civil society. They are to represent ALL afghan women. However,   what I found very surprising was that not all Afghan women feel connected or well represented by these so-called urban women. Some from rural Afghanistan do not feel that urban elite women necessarily speak for them.

 The preference of these rural women in attaining peace even if it means sacrificing some formal women's rights. To put this into perspective, by the way, it is estimated that   76% of Afghan women live in rural communities. Okay guys, so since I mentioned the difference between urban and rural perspectives in our last fact, I want to elaborate a little bit more on this.   It has been reported that Afghan women as a whole, have benefited from the post-regime rise in women's rights, and access to opportunities. However, it is also said that these gains for women have been distributed unequally, with the increase for women in urban areas being higher than the rural women. For many rural women, life has not changed much from the Taliban era. They are still fully dependent on men in their families for permission to access health care, attend school, and work. Typically, families allow their girls to have a primary or secondary education,   usually up to the age of puberty and then will proceed with arranged marriages. Even if a young woman is granted permission to attend a university by her male guardian, her father or future husband may not permit her to work after graduation. Also, due to the fact that much of the war has occurred in rural areas of the country, many rural women have suffered the loss of husbands, brothers, and fathers. And the International Crisis Group Report, based on interviews with Afghan women in the fall of 2019 and the summer of 2020, showed, and I quote, "Peace is an absolute priority for some rural women. Even a peace deal very much on the Taliban terms." Alright, guys, we have five more facts to look at relating to the Taliban and women to go, but before I get into the last 5,   just wanna let you know that we did a dedicated video specifically on the Taliban. You guys don't want to miss that one. I'll link to it below in the video description section. A lot of information in there for you guys. I think you guys are going to find it very eye-opening. So again, I'll link to it below in the video description section, where you can enjoy it after this one. Now, fact number 5   looks at education for women. In the poorest and remote areas of the country, enrollment levels vary and girls still lack equal access to education. The underlying reason for low girls' enrollment is insecurity and traditional norms and practices related to girl's and women's roles in society.   Other reasons can be explained in part by a lack of female teachers, especially in rural schools.   Only 16% of Afghan schools are girls only, and many of them lack proper sanitation facilities.   Certain cultural practices also affect girls' education. Girls continue to marry very young. 

  17% by the way, marry before their 15th birthday. Under the Taliban regime, they have implemented their interpretation of Sharia Law, and education for women and girls was forbidden under almost all circumstances. Now, after the regime in 2003, fewer than 10% of girls were enrolled in primary schools and by 2017, that number had grown to 33% while, female enrollment in secondary schools grew from   6% percent in 2003 to 39% in 2017. So, these stats mean that 3.5 million Afghan girls were in school with 100,000 studying in universities. So, you can see that big increase that happened.   Now, when it comes to women's health during the first regime, it was said that Afghanistan struggled with a collapsed healthcare system, with essentially no medical services available for women. Post-regime initiatives though, constructed 3,135 functional health facilities by   2018, and this gave 87% of Afghan people access to a medical facility within two hours distances. As a   result, women's life expectancy grew from 56 years in 2001 to 66 years in 2017, and their mortality during childbirth declined from 1,100 per 100,000 live births in the year 2000 to 396 per 100,000 in   2015. And real quick, I want to look at women in the workforce. In early July 2021, members of the new regime walked into the offices of Azizi Bank, in the southern city of Kandahar, and ordered 9   women working there to leave. According to three of the women involved, as well as the bank's manager,   the members escorted the women to their homes and told them not to return to their jobs. Instead, they explained that male relatives could take their place. And one of the women who had worked in the accounts department stated that, and quote, "It's really strange to not be allowed to get to work,   but now this is what it is. I taught myself English and even learned how to operate a computer.   But now, I will have to look for a place where  I can just work with more women around. Fact number   2 leads us to modesty expectations. In the first regime, specifically in urban areas, the Taliban enforced a dress code that required women to be covered under a burqa. And, while the burqa existed prior to the Taliban, its use was not mandatory. However, the Taliban enforced the wearing of the burqa.   The showing of ankles, feet, hands, and of course, the face of a woman, was not allowed in public   Even girls as young as eight or nine years old were expected to wear the burqa. Now, under this new Taliban regime, the Taliban has stated that women will no longer be required to wear the burqa in public. Instead, girls and women will be required to wear the hijab for their safety in public.

 And finally, the fact to end off on is a fact from the male perspective about this. So, this is pretty surprising. A recent study by "UN Women and Partners," showed that only 15% of Afghan men think women should be allowed to work outside of their home after marriage. And two-thirds of men complain Afghan women now have too many rights. So, with this information, although we cannot say for certain, it appears as though, under the new regime, women may be allowed to work, as long as it is in line with the majority male opinion. And that's where we'll end this episode off. Really hope you stuck around till the end so you didn't miss any of this information.

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