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Key help group says Taliban indicators exemption for ladies in southern heartland By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: An Afghan lady and a woman stroll in a avenue in Kabul, Afghanistan, November 9, 2022. REUTERS/Ali Khara

By Michelle Nichols

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) -A global help company in Afghanistan hopes to have an interim association inside days to permit its Afghan feminine employees to return to work within the southern province of Kandahar – the birthplace of the Taliban and residential to the supreme religious chief.

Norwegian Refugee Council Secretary Normal Jan Egeland spokes to Reuters after touring to Kabul on Wednesday from Kandahar, the place he met with key Taliban leaders.

“If we will get an area interim association – that we have been promised in Kandahar – that’s one thing we will use in the remainder of the nation,” stated Egeland, who was the U.N. help chief from 2003-06.

The Taliban seized energy in August 2021 as U.S.-led forces withdrew after 20 years of battle. Final month, Taliban authorities started implementing a ban on Afghan ladies working for the U.N. after stopping ladies working for help teams in December. U.N. and help officers stated the orders got here from Taliban leaders in Kandahar.


The U.N. and help teams have been making an attempt to carve out exemptions for ladies to ship help, significantly in well being and training. The Taliban administration has been promising since January a set of written pointers to permit help teams to function with feminine employees.

“Every time new directions are issued by the authorities, we’ll inform you,” Abdulrahman Habib, spokesman for the financial ministry which introduced the ban on feminine employees final yr, stated on Wednesday.

Egeland stated that when he complained that the rules have been taking too lengthy, the officers in Kandahar steered an interim association may very well be agreed inside days to permit Afghan ladies to return to work within the workplace and subject.

“When this occurs within the province of the supreme ruler that must be a foundation for additionally having interim preparations elsewhere,” stated Egeland. “I hope we will now be a door opener for different organizations as nicely. That is what we’re looking for.”

Taliban officers have stated selections on feminine help employees are an “inside problem.”

The Taliban say they respect ladies’s rights in accordance with their strict interpretation of Islamic regulation. They’ve additionally tightened controls on ladies’s entry to public life, barring ladies and ladies from college and highschool.

The Afghan persons are in for a “very troublesome yr forward,” the highest U.S. help official has warned, as donors grapple with difficult the Taliban’s crackdown on ladies and ladies, extra crises all over the world, and fewer funding total.

“We’re collateral harm right here on this steady Chilly Battle between the de facto rulers of Afghanistan and people who left the nation and left behind 40 million civilians,” stated Egeland, noting NRC had 40% much less funding this yr in contrast with 2022.

The United Nations says practically three-quarters of Afghanistan’s 40 million folks want humanitarian assist and it has additionally warned that funding is drying up. A $4.6 billion U.N. attraction for 2023 is at present lower than 8% funded.

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