Taliban orders NGOs to ban female employees from coming to work

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  • Taliban order NGOs to stop working female staff
  • Following the suspension of college female students
  • UN says order would violate humanitarian principles
  • UN to meet with Taliban for clarification

KABUL (Reuters) – Afghanistan’s Taliban government on Saturday will ban all female employees from working at all domestic and foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the latest crackdown on women’s freedom, according to a letter from the economy ministry. I ordered you. .

The letter was confirmed by economy ministry spokesman Abdurrahman Habib, who said some female employees were not adhering to the government’s interpretation of the Islamic dress code and were allowed to work until further notice. said it was not.

It comes just days after the Taliban-run regime ordered universities to close for women, prompting global condemnation and sparking protests and fierce criticism inside Afghanistan.

UN Special Representative for Afghanistan and Humanitarian Coordinator Ramiz Arakbarov said he was “deeply concerned” by the letter’s report, which was a “clear violation of humanitarian principles”.

It was not immediately clear what impact this order would have on the UN agency, which has a large presence in Afghanistan serving amid the country’s humanitarian crisis.

The United Nations Office for Humanitarian Affairs said the United Nations would try to meet with Taliban leaders to “clarify the reported order”.

Norway’s acting ambassador, who has funded aid in Afghanistan and hosted talks with the Taliban and members of civil society in January, condemned the move.

Paul Kruman-Becken tweeted: “The ban on female staff in NGOs must be lifted immediately. This move not only hurts women’s rights, but also exacerbates the humanitarian crisis, threatening the most vulnerable Afghans.” will hurt.”

When asked whether the regulation would include UN agencies, Habib said the letter would apply to entities under the coordinating body of Afghan humanitarian aid organizations known as ACBAR. Not included, but includes over 180 local and international NGOs.

However, the United Nations often contracts with NGOs registered in Afghanistan to carry out humanitarian operations.

Aid officials say women workers are essential to ensuring that women have access to aid.

Afghanistan’s already struggling economy is in crisis in the face of economic sanctions and cuts in development aid since the Taliban took control in 2021.

Humanitarian aid aimed at meeting urgent needs has provided a lifeline for millions of people. More than half of Afghanistan’s population relies on humanitarian aid, according to the International Rescue Commission.

Reported by Kabul Newsroom Edited by Mark Potter

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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