Taliban blocked unaccompanied women from Afghanistan flights

Dozens of women were barred by Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers from boarding recent flights – including some overseas – because they were not traveling with a male guardian.

Some of the disenfranchised women, who arrived at Kabul’s international airport Friday, were dual nationals returning to their homes in other countries – including some from Canada, according to two Afghan airline officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Women were also denied flights to Islamabad, Dubai and Turkey on both Kam Air and the state-owned Ariana Airline.

Last month, the Taliban banned Afghan women from traveling more than 48 miles without a male guardian, based on the group’s interpretation of Islam.

Women across Afghanistan say guardianship rules are being imposed on a much wider scale, too. These requirements include a male relative accompanying them for rudimentary tasks, such as entering government buildings, seeing a doctor or catching a taxi, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Afghan women chant and hold signs of protest during a demonstration in Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, March 26
Afghan women chant and hold signs of protest during a demonstration in Kabul, Afghanistan today.
AP Photo / Mohammed Shoaib Amin
women at airport Afghanistan
Women across Afghanistan say guardianship rules are being imposed on a much wider scale.
AP Photos / Massoud Hossaini

By Saturday, some women traveling alone were given permission to board an Ariana Airlines flight to western Herat province. However, by the time their permission was granted, they had missed their flight.

The latest assault on women’s rights in Afghanistan comes just days after the all-male religiously driven government broke its promise to allow girls to return to school after the sixth grade.

The Taliban’s refusal to open up education to all Afghan children infuriated large swaths of the country’s population. On Saturday, dozens of Afghan girls gathered in Kabul to demand the right to go to school.

Afghan girls participate in a lesson at Tajrobawai Girls High School, in Herat, Afghanistan
The government recently broke its promise to allow girls to return to school after the sixth grade.
AP Photo / Petros Giannakouris, File

With Post wire services.

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