Afghanistan’s Taliban outlaws women’s beauty parlours


The Taliban‘s most recent assault on Afghan women’s rights calls for the closure of all beauty parlours.

The prohibition was announced today by the Ministry for the Prevention of Vice and the Propagation of Virtue, but a letter about it, dated June 24, has been making the rounds on social media.

The timeframe for closing women’s beauty salons is one month, according to spokesperson Mohammad Sadiq Akif.

Each salon is then required to file a report attesting to the fact that it has closed for business.

These places are usually female-only and have their windows covered so that customers cannot be seen from outside.

Despite the Taliban’s promise to implement a more moderate rule than when they were previously in power in the 1990s, the group is essentially barring women from public life.

Women are not allowed at parks, gyms, or public baths and their access to education has been suppressed with all universities for women ordered to close at the end of last year.

One woman, named only as Sahar for security reasons, said the salon ban takes away the final avenue women had for socialising safely outside of the family.

The Kabul local, who is used to getting her hair and nails done every few weeks, said: ‘Parks are not allowed for women so it was a good place for us to meet our friends.

‘It was a good reason to see each other, to meet other women, other girls to talk about issues.

‘Now I don’t know how to meet them, how to see them, how to talk to each other… I think it will be very impactful for us and women around Afghanistan.’

The Taliban’s measures have triggered a fierce international uproar, increasing the country’s isolation at a time when its economy has collapsed.

Western governments and major organisations have said the restrictions on women are essentially preventing the Taliban from getting any international recognition.

The administration says it respects women’s rights in accordance with its interpretation of Islamic law and Afghan customs.


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