In Afghanistan, the ruling hard-line Islamist Taliban movement has ordered drivers not to play music in their cars. They also ordered restrictions on the transportation of women travelers. Women who do not wear the Islamic headscarf, as stated in a letter from the Ministry of Preserving the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice distributed to motorists, should not be taken.
The ministry’s spokesman, Muhammad Sadiq Asif, confirmed the directive on Sunday. How exactly the veil should look is not clear from the arrangement. As a rule, the Taliban do not understand that this means covering the hair and neck, but rather wearing an abaya from head to toe.
The directive also advised drivers not to take women with them who wish to travel more than 45 miles (approximately 72 kilometres) without a male companion. In the message, which was also circulated on social media, drivers were directed, among other things, to take prayer breaks. She said she should advise people to grow beards.
Islamists have significantly curtailed women’s rights since their return to power. In many cases they cannot return to their jobs. Most girls’ secondary schools are closed. Street protests by activists were violently suppressed. Many fled the country.
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