Taliban particular forces in camouflage fired their weapons into the air Saturday, bringing an abrupt and scary finish to the newest protest march within the capital by Afghan ladies demanding equal rights from the brand new rulers.
Additionally on Saturday, the chief of Pakistan’s highly effective intelligence company, which has an outsized affect on the Taliban, made a shock go to to Kabul.
Taliban fighters shortly captured most of Afghanistan final month and celebrated the departure of the final U.S. forces after 20 years of struggle. The rebel group should now govern a war-ravaged nation that’s closely reliant on worldwide assist.
The ladies’s march — the second in as many days in Kabul — started peacefully. Demonstrators laid a wreath exterior Afghanistan’s Protection Ministry to honor Afghan troopers who died preventing the Taliban earlier than marching on to the presidential palace.
“We’re right here to realize human rights in Afghanistan,” stated 20-year-old protester Maryam Naiby. “I really like my nation. I’ll all the time be right here.” Because the protesters’ shouts grew louder, a number of Taliban officers waded into the group to ask what they needed to say.
Flanked by fellow demonstrators, Sudaba Kabiri, a 24-year-old college scholar, instructed her Taliban interlocutor that Islam’s Prophet gave ladies rights and so they needed theirs. The Taliban official promised ladies can be given their rights however the ladies, all of their early 20s, had been skeptical.
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Because the demonstrators reached the presidential palace, a dozen Taliban particular forces bumped into the group, firing within the air and sending demonstrators fleeing. Kabiri, who spoke to The Related Press, stated in addition they fired tear fuel.
The Taliban have promised an inclusive authorities and a extra reasonable type of Islamic rule than after they final dominated the nation from 1996 to 2001. However many Afghans, particularly ladies, are deeply skeptical and concern a roll again of rights gained during the last 20 years.
For a lot of the previous two weeks, Taliban officers have been holding conferences amongst themselves, amid studies of variations amongst them rising. Early on Saturday, neighboring Pakistan’s highly effective intelligence chief Gen. Faiez Hameed made a shock go to to Kabul. It wasn’t instantly clear what he needed to say to the Taliban management however the Pakistani intelligence service has a powerful affect on the Taliban.
The Taliban management had its headquarters in Pakistan and had been usually stated to be in direct contact with the highly effective Inter-Providers Intelligence company. Though Pakistan routinely denied offering the Taliban army assist, the accusation was usually made by the Afghan authorities and Washington.
Faiez’ go to comes because the world waits to see what sort of authorities the Taliban will ultimately announce, in search of one that’s inclusive and ensures safety of girls’s rights and the nation’s minorities.
The Taliban have promised a broad-based authorities and have held talks with former president Hamid Karzai and the previous authorities’s negotiation chief Abdullah Abdullah. However the make-up of the brand new authorities is unsure and it was unclear whether or not hard-line ideologues among the many Taliban will win the day — and whether or not the rollbacks feared by the demonstrating ladies will happen.
Taliban members whitewashed murals Saturday that promoted well being care, warned of the risks of HIV and even paid homage to a few of Afghanistan’s iconic overseas contributors, like anthropologist Nancy Dupree, who singlehandedly chronicled Afghanistan’s wealthy cultural legacy. It was a worrying signal of makes an attempt to erase reminders of the previous 20 years.
The murals had been changed with slogans congratulating Afghans on their victory.
A Taliban cultural fee spokesman, Ahmadullah Muttaqi, tweeted that the murals had been painted over “as a result of they’re towards our values. They had been spoiling the minds of the mujahedeen and as a substitute we wrote slogans that can be helpful to everybody.”
In the meantime, the younger ladies demonstrators stated they’ve needed to defy anxious households to press forward with their protests, even sneaking out of their houses to take their calls for for equal rights to the brand new rulers.
Farhat Popalzai, one other 24-year-old college scholar, stated she needed to be the voice of Afghanistan’s unvoiced ladies, these too afraid to come back out on the road.
“I’m the voice of the ladies who’re unable to talk.” she stated. “They assume this can be a man’s nation however it’s not, it’s a lady’s nation too.” Popalzai and her fellow demonstrators are too younger to recollect the Taliban rule that led to 2001 with the U.S.-led invasion. The say their concern is predicated on the tales they’ve heard of girls not being allowed to go to high school and work.
Naiby, the 20-year-old, has already operated a ladies’s group and is a spokesperson for Afghanistan’s Paralympics. She mirrored on the tens of 1000’s of Afghans who rushed to Kabul’s Hamid Karzai Worldwide Airport to flee Afghanistan after the Taliban overran the capital on Aug. 15.
“They had been afraid,” however for her she stated, the struggle is in Afghanistan.