US hopes Taliban will quickly reverse closure of girls’ schools – World

US special envoy Thomas West said Saturday he expects the Taliban to reverse a decision to keep girls out of Afghan schools.

The United States has canceled talks with the Taliban administration, except at the Doha forum, in response to the ban announced on Wednesday.

West, who led the meeting with the Taliban, said at the forum:

“I was surprised by the reversal last Wednesday and you may have seen the world react and criticize it. “This is the first thing to break the trust of the Afghan people,” he said.

West said the Taliban, who recaptured Kabul in August after 20 years of war with a Western-backed government, have convinced other countries that girls will be allowed to return to school during talks in recent months, West said.

The Taliban sparked international outrage on Wednesday by closing a girls’ high school just hours after school.

Suhail Shaheen, the Taliban representative in Doha, said in a text message: AFP The group had no policy against the education of girls.

“There is a real problem that needs to be addressed first. Unfortunately, the issue was not resolved before the closing date for girls’ schools on March 23,” said Shaheen.

Afghan foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi is due to attend the Doha forum on Sunday, but it was not immediately confirmed whether he had arrived to attend after the US decided to cancel the meeting.

Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai said in a meeting with international politicians and business leaders that enforcing the ban would be more difficult than when the Taliban came to power.

Yousafzai, winner of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize for fighting for the right to education for all children, said, “I think it was much easier for the Taliban to enforce the girls’ education ban in 1996.”

“This time it is much more difficult. Because we’ve seen what it means to be educated, and what it means to be empowered. This time it will be much more difficult for the Taliban to maintain the girls’ education ban.

“This ban will not last forever.”

The Taliban stopped girls from attending school from their rule in Afghanistan in 1996 until they were overthrown by the United States-led international coalition in 2001.

Yousafzai said girls’ schooling should be a condition for returning the Taliban-controlled country to international life.

“If we don’t recognize the human rights of women and girls, we shouldn’t do it,” she said.

No country has yet recognized the Taliban government, and many say they cannot resume aid to the Taliban until basic rights, including education, are upheld.

About 20 girls and women protested in front of the Ministry of Education in the Afghan capital Kabul on Saturday.

“Open the school! Justice, justice!” Some shouted at the protesters holding school textbooks.

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