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The Long, Long Struggle for Women's Rights in Afghanistan

The Afghan government enlisted foreign advisors, they again established girls schools, funded a new university, and later instituted a new constitution that introduced a democratic framework and granted Afghan women the right to vote. In urban areas women attended college, took jobs outside of the home, ran businesses, and some even ventured into politics. Kabul became cosmopolitan.

From a Modernizing State to the Taliban

It was in the late 1970s, as the women's movement gained ground in the West, that the era of progress for Afghan women came to an abrupt halt.

When Afghan communists took over in a 1978 coup, Afghanistan became caught up in the Cold War politics of the time. At first, the communists advanced an even more dramatic campaign for social reforms, which included making education for girls compulsory and (again) implementing a minimum age for girls to marry.

Hazaras are believed to have settled in Afghanistan at least as far back as the thirteenth century. The Shi'a Hazaras are historically the most discriminated ethnic minority group in the state and have seen little improvement in their situation despite the recent changes. While President Karzai did appoint six Hazaras to his cabinet, there appears to be no reduction in the discrimination facing the majority of the Hazara population of Afghanistan. Forced to migrate to Kabul in the second half of the 20th century due to persecution, their low socio-economic status has created a class as well as an ethnic division between them and the rest of urban Afghan society.

Shia minority on border with Iran in Baluchistan, Pakistan ...

'Every year we dig mass graves': the slaughter of Pakistan's Hazara | The Guardian - April 5, 2021 |

Shia have been persecuted for decades in Pakistan. Nearby city of Quetta is a sanctuary and stronghold of Taliban. Terror campaign targeted Hazara girls school in Kabul earlier this year.

Afghanistan mourns 60 schoolgirls killed in deadliest attack in years | Arab News - May 9, 2021 |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 14th, 2021 at 12:52:58 PM EST
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