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Turkey urges Taliban to reverse university ban for women

Taliban women Afghanistan

Afghan female university students stop by Taliban security personnel stand next to a university in Kabul on December 21, 2022. Afghanistan's Taliban rulers have banned university education for women nationwide, provoking condemnation from the United States and the United Nations over another assault on human rights. Wakil KOHSAR / AFP

Turkey on Thursday urged Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers to reverse their decision barring women from university education, calling it “neither Islamic nor humane,” Agence France-Presse reported.

The ban by the Taliban, who promised a softer rule when they returned to power after two decades of war last year, drew global condemnation.

“This ban is neither Islamic nor humane,” Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told a televised press conference.

“We do not find it right. God willing, the [Taliban] will reverse this decision,” he said.

“What harm does the education of women do to humanity?”

The ban on higher education comes less than three months after thousands of girls and young women sat university entrance exams across the country, hoping to continue their education.

The universities are currently on winter break and due to reopen in March.

Most teenage girls across the country have already been banned from secondary school, severely limiting university intake.

The United States condemned the decision “in the strongest terms” while Britain said it was a “grave step backwards.”

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