Taliban says Burqa not mandatory for women, Hijab is
New Delhi : After forcibly taking control of power in Afghanistan, Taliban issued an advisory on Tuesday that the full burqa is not compulsory for women, but it is mandatory for them to wear Hijab.
During their rule in the country from 1996-2001, girls' schools were closed, women were prevented from travelling and working, and women were forced to wear an all-covering burqa in public.
"The burqa is not the only hijab (headscarf) that (can) be observed, there is different types of hijab not limited to burqa," Suhail Shaheen, spokesman for the group's political office in Doha, told Britain's Sky News.
Amid concerns centring on clothing, several countries and rights groups have raised the alarm for the fate of women's education in Afghanistan, which is now in the hands of the hardline militants who entered the capital Kabul on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the women "can get education from primary to higher education -- that means university. We have announced this policy at international conferences, the Moscow conference and here at the Doha conference (on Afghanistan)," Shaheen said.
He also mentioned that several schools in the Taliban occupied areas were operational.
The previous Taliban government imposed the strictest interpretations of sharia, establishing religious police for the suppression of "vice".
Taliban courts handed out extreme punishments including chopping off the hands of thieves and stoning to death women accused of adultery.