‘Cover From Head to Toe’: New Poster From Taliban-Occupied Territory Belies Group’s Reformist Claims

Asia & Pacific

Concerns over the state of women, minorities and human rights in general have escalated as the Taliban* makes sweeping gains across Afghanistan. The group has claimed that it now has “85% of Afghan soil under control”.

A new poster emerging from a Taliban-dominated district in the northern part of Afghanistan shows instructions for women to “cover themselves from head to toe” while stepping out of the home and not venture out unless accompanied by a “male relative”.

​The poster is a throwback to the 1990s, when the Taliban used to control Afghanistan, where they applied Sharia law.

As the Taliban fighters mount a countrywide offensive against the Afghan National Security Force (ANSF) against the backdrop of a hasty withdrawal of US-led coalition forces, the Islamist insurgents have told the international community that they would respect human rights and women’s rights, as stipulated under Islamic law.

The Taliban expressed its “readiness” to observe human rights, including the rights of women, in keeping with Islamic standards and Afghan traditions at a meeting with Russia’s Special Presidential Representative for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov in Moscow on 8 July, a Russian foreign ministry statement said.

The new poster emerges days after a British daily, The Observer, reported that women living in Taliban-controlled territory in Afghanistan have been barred from work and leaving home…

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