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UN Mission urges Taliban to allow high school education for girls

The UN mission warned that if the ban on girls secondary schools persists, the crisis in the country, the security situation and poverty will only worsen.

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Kabul: The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) urged on Sunday the Taliban-led (under UN sanctions for terrorist activities) Afghan government to allow high school education for girls.

The Taliban came to power in Afghanistan in August 2021, which has resulted in deepening economic, humanitarian and security crises in the country. Although authorities promised not to discriminate against females, the Taliban has banned Afghan women from working outside their homes, and has introduced gender-based segregation in schools. Girls are now not allowed to receive education beyond sixth grade.

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“On the day marking the first anniversary of the exclusion of girls from high schools in Afghanistan, the United Nations re-iterates its call for the country’s de facto authorities to take urgent measures to reopen high schools for all,” the mission’s statement read.

The UN mission warned that if the ban on girls secondary schools persists, the crisis in the country, the security situation and poverty will only worsen.

“If the ban on girls attending high school remains, the UN is increasingly concerned that such measures, taken together with other restrictions being placed upon Afghans’ basic freedoms, will contribute to a deepening of the crises facing Afghanistan, including greater insecurity, poverty and isolation,” the UNAMA said.

According to the report of the UN International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) published in August, the deprivation of secondary education for girls has led to the loss of at least $500 million by the Afghan economy over the past 12 months, which is 2.5% of the country’s GDP. According to the report, if 3 million girls were able to complete secondary education and enter the labor market, girls and women would contribute at least $5.4 billion to the Afghan economy.

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