Taliban issue posters ordering women to cover up: 'Encouragement for Muslim women to follow Sharia law'

The Taliban's religious police have put up posters around the capital Kabul ordering Afghan women to cover up. The poster includes an image of the face-covering burqa

Strange posters in Kabul

Another controversial move by the Taliban highlights how they intend to govern the people of Afghanistan, especially their oppressive treatment of women. 

In the latest, the Taliban's religious police have put up posters around the capital Kabul ordering Afghan women to cover up. 

The poster includes an image of the face-covering burqa. As circulated on social media forums, it can be seen pasted on cafes and shops. 

As per media reports, the poster has been issued this week by the Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice. 

The poster reads: "According to Sharia law, Muslim women must wear the hijab." 

(Photograph:Twitter)

'Encouragement to follow Sharia law'

A spokesman for the ministry, responsible for enforcing the Taliban's harsh interpretation of Islamic law, confirmed to AFP on Friday that it was behind the orders. 

"If someone does not follow it, it does not mean she will be punished or beaten, it's just encouragement for Muslim women to follow Sharia law," Sadeq Akif Muhajir said.

(Photograph:AFP)

Beheaded mannequins

Recently, the Taliban ordered shop owners in western Afghanistan to cut the heads off mannequins. As per media reports, the hardline Islamist regime stated that figures representing the human form violate Islamic law. 

The same was visible in a viral video clip, that showed men sawing the heads off shop dummies in Herat.

(Photograph:AFP)

Curtailed freedom

The Taliban returned to power in August last year and since their return, they have increasingly restricted freedoms, especially of women and girls. 

Although the Taliban have promised a lighter version of the hardline rule that characterised their first stint in power from 1996 to 2001, women are largely excluded from government employment, and secondary schools for girls have remained shuttered in several provinces.

(Photograph:AFP)

Use of headscarves in Afghanistan

In Kabul, women already cover their hair with headscarves, though some wear modest western clothing. 

Outside of the capital the burqa, which became mandatory for women under the Taliban's first regime in the 1990s, has remained common.

(Photograph:AFP)

Ban on women from travelling alone

The Taliban have also banned women from travelling alone on long journeys.

No nation has yet formally recognised the Taliban government and diplomats face the delicate task of channelling aid to the stricken Afghan economy without propping up the hardline Islamists.

(Photograph:AFP)

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