October 3, 2023

All girls’s magnificence salons in Afghanistan are on account of shut on Tuesday as a part of the Taliban administration’s announcement earlier this month that women-only premises are banned underneath Sharia regulation and are creating financial hardship for grooms’ households throughout wedding ceremony celebrations, officers mentioned.

The closure of salons – one of many few remaining public locations in Afghanistan the place girls might collect outdoors the house – represents one other grim milestone for girls’s rights in Afghanistan. Because the Taliban took energy in August 2021, the federal government has steadily curtailed girls’s rights, barring girls and ladies from most public locations, touring any important distance with out a male family member, and attending faculty after sixth grade.

The salons got a one-month grace interval to cease their actions.

In response to Sadeq Akif Muhajir, a spokesman for the Ministry of Propagating Advantage and Stopping Vice, Taliban safety forces within the capital Kabul made rounds on Tuesday to ensure salons have been abiding by the ban.

The preliminary announcement of the closure of salons sparked a uncommon public outcry earlier this month in Kabul, the capital, the place dozens of salon house owners and beauticians marched down the road holding indicators in opposition to the ban. Safety forces, together with the Taliban administration, broke up the protest utilizing fireplace hoses and firing weapons into the air to disperse the group.

Using pressure drew criticism from the UN mission in Afghanistan, which tweeted that “Afghans have the suitable to freedom of expression with out violence. The de facto authorities ought to assist this.”

For a lot of girls in Kabul, magnificence salons have been thought-about one of many few protected locations the place girls might collect away from males outdoors the house.

Shukria Afshar, 46, labored for 2 years as a beautician on the Gul Raihan magnificence salon in Kabul. She mentioned that her husband solely made a couple of {dollars} per week as a day laborer and that the cash from the salon was crucial to supplementing the household’s revenue.

The job additionally supplied her with a much-needed psychological well being outlet as she watched her rights being undermined by the Taliban administration.

“I might eliminate the anxiousness and psychological strain by going to a salon and dealing,” she mentioned.

In response to the Afghanistan Ladies’s Chamber of Commerce and Business, earlier Taliban decrees restricted girls in most employment alternatives outdoors of healthcare and personal enterprise, with about 60,000 girls working in about 12,000 salons throughout Afghanistan.

“This isn’t about getting your hair and nails finished,” mentioned Heather Barr, deputy director of girls’s rights at Human Rights Watch. “That is about 60,000 girls who’ve misplaced their jobs. It is about girls dropping one of many solely locations they might discover group and assist.”

Such restrictions have additionally drawn widespread worldwide condemnation, together with from different Islamist governments corresponding to these of Iran and Saudi Arabia, and prompted worldwide human rights displays to label Afghanistan as one of many world’s most restrictive international locations for girls.

“Ladies and ladies in Afghanistan face extreme discrimination that may quantity to gender-based persecution, a criminal offense in opposition to humanity,” UN Particular Rapporteur on Afghanistan Richard Bennett mentioned final month. “The de facto authorities seem like ruling by way of systemic discrimination with the intent to topic girls and ladies to complete domination.”

Safiullah Padshah made a report.

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