Taliban fighter points gun at Afghan woman protesting against non-inclusive government
Afghan women battling for basic rights chanted anti-Pakistan slogans and protested against new government formation by the Taliban in which 17 out of the 33 members are a part of the United Nations terror list.
A member of the Taliban forces pointed his gun at Afghan women shouting slogans during an anti-Pakistan protest, near the Pakistan embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan.
The scene resembled the defining image of a single man defiantly blocking tanks at China's Tiananmen Square in 1989.
Afghans who enjoyed major progress in education and civil liberties over the 20 years of US-backed government remain fearful of Taliban intentions and daily protests have continued since the Taliban takeover, challenging the new rulers.
But as the Taliban transition from militant force to governing power, they face a growing number of protests against their rule, with two people attending a demonstration shot dead in the western city of Herat.
No ministry for women
The Taliban announced on Tuesday an interim government drawn exclusively from their own loyalist ranks, with established hardliners in all key posts and no women, despite previous promises to form an inclusive administration for all Afghans.
The Taliban had said they want to form an “inclusive, Islamic government.”
Contrary to the Taliban's previous claims, the new government does not include a ministry for women's affairs which was there during former President Ashraf Ghani's rule.
Taliban spokesman ended conference on question of equal rights
Zabihullah Mujahid, the Taliban’s longtime spokesman ended a news conference when a journalist asked him about rights of women under the sharia law in Afghanistan.
Earlier, he had promised the Taliban would honor women’s rights within the norms of Islamic law, without elaborating.
Moderate portrayal for show
The Taliban has urged Afghans to be patient and vowed to be more tolerant this time, a commitment many Afghans and foreign powers will be scrutinising as a condition for aid and investment desperately needed in Afghanistan.
They have encouraged women to return to work and have allowed girls to return to school, handing out Islamic headscarves at the door. A female news anchor had interviewed a Taliban official in a TV studio.
Ban from work and education
The last time the Taliban ruled Afghanistan, girls could not attend school and women were banned from work and education.
Religious police would flog anyone breaking the rules and public executions were carried out.
17 members on wanted terrorist lists
17 members of the Taliban's new interim government are on the United Nations terror list.
In a strongly worded statement, Afghan envoy to United Nations Ghulam Isaczai has called the announcement by Taliban of the new Afghan govt "anything but inclusive"