After a month since the Taliban swept over Kabul, making promises along the way; the Taliban finally started executing their brand of governance.
In August, the Taliban made bold claims that they would run the government differently this time. While Afghans are crowding the international airport in a bid to exit the country, Taliban leaders repeated their reminders to the west and the rest of the world, “Nobody will be harmed in Afghanistan.” “There is a huge difference between us now and 20 years ago,” said Zabiullah Mujahid, a long-time Taliban spokesman.
Mujahid also added that they would respect freedom of speech, avoid carrying out revenge against those who helped the foreign military, and respect women’s rights. They even sent a member of their media team, Mawlawi Abdulhaq Hemad, to Afghanistan TV to be interviewed by Beheshta Arghand, one of the female news anchors.
But the Taliban took it easy on their promise and made no hesitation in breaking it. Even before any blueprint of a working government emerged, Taliban fighters were dispatched to hunt for collaborators, journalists, and translators.
Now, the world puts a spotlight on the Taliban’s plan for the educational system and the promise they made to respect women’s rights. Abdul Baqi Haqqani, the Taliban government’s new minister for Higher Education, announced on September 12 that women could attend school. But they need to attend universities and schools that are segregated by gender. Haqqani also announced that dress codes are mandatory, indicating that hijabs must be worn all the time by women. Haqqani emphasized that the Taliban government plans to “start building on what exists today” and refrain from their previous extremist governance.
The announcement came after Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, Qatar’s Foreign Minister, arrived in Kabul to meet with recently appointed Taliban officials.
In a way, the Taliban’s all-male government found a way to keep its promise. Back in 1996, women were banned entirely from attending schools, let alone universities. However, segregating classes, especially in universities, is already becoming a logistical nightmare. University representatives are worried that there will be no female teacher available to teach all female students.