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Male students walk out in protest after Taliban bans women from universities

A day after the Taliban regime in Sharia-governed Afghanistan banned women students from universities, several male students at the Nangarhar University in Jalalabad and at Kandahar University in Afghanistan reportedly staged a protest and expressed solidarity with the women. The male students walked out of the examination hall at the University and stood by women’s rights in the country.

The video of the protests at Nangarhar University was posted by journalist Abdulhaq Omeri who said that male students at the University were walking away from their exam in a show of solidarity with the female students to protest the Taliban’s ban on girls’ education. The video which was shared with the hashtag ‘Let Her Learn’ showed female students applauding the gesture by men as the latter walked out of the exam halls.

Another similar video of the protests was shared by activist Habib Khan. “Bravo! Men of Nangarhar university protested along with women against the Taliban ban on girls’ education. Nangahar is a Pashtun-dominated province, and this is the first demonstration protesting the ban,” the tweet read.

The video also showed the male students holding posters in their hands and standing for the rights of the female students. Several female students were seen crying outside the classrooms as they were suspended access to education after the government instructed all the public and private universities to comply with the cabinet decision.

In the series of tweets further, Khan also shared a video that showed male students walking out of the classroom at Kandahar. “Following Nangarhar, male students in Kandahar also walked away from their exam in a show of solidarity with the female students and to protest the Taliban ban,” he tweeted.

“You are all informed to immediately implement the mentioned order of suspending female education until further notice,” said a letter signed by Minister of Higher Education Neda Mohammad Nadeem and addressed to all government and private universities.

As reported earlier, the US has condemned the regressive order issued by the Taliban. US State Secretary Antony Blinken called the Taliban’s announcement a setback to their objective of being accepted by the international community.

Also, Human Rights Watch, slammed the move by the Taliban and said, “A shameful move. The Taliban have banned women in Afghanistan from attending universities. This is the latest in a series of policies that have restricted the basic rights of women and girls.”

Despite pledging a more progressive government that respected the rights of women and minorities at first, the Taliban have largely applied their stringent interpretation of Islamic law since gaining control of the country last year.

They have barred females from middle and high school and have also barred women from most jobs. They require them to wear full-body coverings in public. Women are also barred from entering parks and gyms and from traveling without a male relative. The ban on higher education comes three months after thousands of girls and women across the country took university entrance exams.

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