UN Secretary-General Concerned by Taliban Imposing New Hijab Rules for Afghan Women

© AFP 2023 / Behrouz Mehri A burqa shop
A burqa shop  - Sputnik International, 1920, 08.05.2022
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres aired his concerns on Sunday about a recent decision by the Taliban* to obligate Afghan women to cover head-to-toe, urging the current Afghan leadership to honor their pledges and observe human rights.
On Saturday, the Taliban government in Afghanistan issued a nationwide decree making hijab compulsory for women when being in public. Wearing burqa, a head-to-toe body clothing with a thin veil that leaves the eyes uncovered, was advised but not mandatory. Women working in government agencies who break this rule will be dismissed, and the same measure will be applied to men if their wives or daughters do not follow the dress code.

"I'm alarmed by today's announcement by the Taliban that women must cover their faces in public and leave home only in cases of necessity. I once again urge the Taliban to keep their promises to Afghan women [and] girls, and their obligations under international human rights law", Guterres said on social media.

Last August, the Taliban stepped up their offensive against government forces amid the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan. They entered Kabul on 15 August and announced the following day that the war was over. In early September, the Taliban introduced a new interim government, headed by Mohammad Hasan Akhund, who was foreign minister during the first Taliban rule and had been under UN sanctions since 2001.
Unrecognised by most of the international community, the Taliban-led government has committed to respecting human rights and rights of women, but without breaching the Islamic traditions.
* Organisation under UN sanctions for terrorist activities
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