The higher education minister in the Taliban government announced Sunday that women in Afghanistan can keep studying in universities, even at postgraduate levels. However, it will be mandatory to wear Islamic dress and classrooms will be segregated on the basis of gender. 

This comes after an all-male government was formed in Afghanistan and Abdul Baqi Haqqan laid out the new policies

The entire world has been anticipating the Taliban’s moves in order to determine whether there will be any changes in the regime from the time they rule in the late 1990s. 

Although the Taliban claim to have changed their attitude towards women, they were seen using violence recently against women protesters. Haqqani insisted that they were not going to go back 20 years. “We will start building on what exists today,” he said.

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The new rule under the new Taliban government will put women under restrictions in that it will make it compulsory to wear hijabs and gender segregation will be enforced. 

“We will not allow boys and girls to study together,” Haqqani said. “We will not allow co-education.” Also, there will be a thorough review of the subjects being taught. 

While during their power in the 1990s, they had banned music and art, televisions and news channels remain this time around. However, the messaging has been very erratic. 

Taliban spokesman Syed Zekrullah Hashmi said on TOLO News, “women should give birth and raise children” and while the Taliban have not ruled out participation of women in government, he said “it’s not necessary that women be in the Cabinet”.

The Taliban took over Afghanistan on August 15, 2021, in a rapid military campaign where they overran Kabul. Afghanis remain in fear despite the Taliban’s promise to be inclusive.  Taliban police officials have used violence on women protesters, beaten Afghan journalists, and elected an all-male government despite all the initial promises.