The Taliban ruled Afghanistan between 1996 and 2001 following strict Islamic law, where women were forbidden from working outside. Girls were not allowed to attend school and women had to cover their faces and be accompanied by a male relative if they wanted to venture out of their homes.
On August 17, The chief of field operations of the U.N. children’s agency expressed cautious optimism about working with Taliban officials following their seizure of power in Afghanistan, expressing their desire for Afghanistan girls in supporting them for education.
UNICEF is still delivering aid to most parts of Afghanistan and is quite hopeful for cooperation with Taliban representatives in recently seized cities like Kandahar, Herat and Jalalabad.
UNICEF cited some Taliban local representatives as saying they were waiting for guidance from their leaders on the issue of educating girls, while others have said they want schools “up and running”.
One Taliban health director in Herat had also asked female employees to report to duty, Ben Messaoud said. UNICEF has not yet established a direct line of communication with Taliban leaders in the capital Kabul, he added.