The rise of the Taliban is contrasted with the loss of women’s rights a year after the US withdrawal from Afghanistan that triggered the Islamists’ takeover
August 15 is a red date on the calendar for Afghanistan. This Monday is the first anniversary of the US withdrawal from the country and the consequent seizure of Kabul by the Taliban. For part of society – minorities and vulnerable populations, especially women – it has been a blackest episode, marked by violence and the suppression of rights in the female population.
The withdrawal of US troops inevitably led to the collapse of the forces of the Central Asian country and, finally, of the Government itself. All this precipitated the recovery of control by the Taliban and the consequent chaotic departure of both foreigners and Afghan citizens themselves. Thousands then headed to Kabul’s Hamid-Karzai International Airport to flee the territory as soon as possible. The panorama left shocking images of the tumult of Afghans invading the runways to sneak into the planes that would move away from the country and give them the promise of freedom. Some perished in the attempt. The images of civilians clinging to the moving devices, and even of the falls of some of them once the flight had begun, went around the world.
Since the Islamists seized power a year ago in a blitzkrieg, Afghan women have all but disappeared from public life and face significant restrictions on what they can wear, where they can work and how they can travel. Meanwhile, families see their incomes diminished as a result of a deepening economic crisis.
Afghan society is divided. While some suffer, others celebrate. The Taliban regime has declared Monday a national holiday to commemorate the event. “August 15 is the first anniversary of the victory of the jihad of the Afghans, led by the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, against the occupation of the Americans and their allies” during the last twenty years, indicates the Ministry of Labor and Foreign Affairs. Social in a statement collected by the pro-Taliban news agency Bajtar News.