On Dec. 20, the Taliban government officially suspended the right to university education for women in Afghanistan. This comes after the Taliban’s bar on secondary education, which was enacted in March 2022 following their government takeover in August 2021. The suspension was confirmed to CNN by the Afghan Ministry of Higher Education and is effective immediately.
This decision comes at a time of turmoil in the Middle East — the Iranian protests following the killing of Mahsa Amini have continued — and is yet another attack taken against the fundamental rights of women. Because of the Taliban’s decision, all women in Afghanistan have lost the privilege of higher education. Additionally, the Taliban has taken stricter, and more violent action — barring women from certain workplaces, parks, and other public spaces.
The right to an education is a privileged one, but it shouldn’t be. In America, we often take these rights for granted, especially when, in so many other places, they don’t even exist. Here’s how you can support Afghan women after the Taliban’s college ban.
- Donate To The Malala Fund.
The Malala Fund is an organization that was founded by Malala and Ziauddin Yousafzai in 2013. The fund invests in education for activists and advocates who are actively fighting for women’s educational rights. Primarily, the organization seeks to help women in regions where secondary education is unavailable to them, including Afghanistan.
- Follow Afghan Activism accounts on social media.
In addition to donating, it’s essential to continue educating yourself on what’s going on in Afghanistan. With social media right at our fingertips, having access to information is easier than ever. Accounts like Women For Afghan Women (WAW) and the Afghan Women’s Organization post regular resources and updates on the ongoing fight for women’s secondary education.
- Stay up to date.
The biggest thing any of us can do is to stay informed. As the fight for educational rights in Afghanistan presses on, it’s up to us to stay up to date. Whether that’s reading articles on the history of Afghan women and their fight for education, or watching the news to stay educated on new developments, remaining literate on Afghanistan’s current climate can help you spread the word and educate those around you.