UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Omar Abdi, who visited Kabul last week, informed journalists at U.N. headquarters that 5 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces — Balkh, Jawzjan, and Samangan withinside the northwest, Kunduz withinside the northeast, and Uruzgan withinside the southwest — are already permitting women to wait for secondary school.
Girls to attend beyond 6th grade
He said the Taliban’s education minister told him they are working on “a framework” to allow all girls to continue their schooling beyond the sixth grade, which should be published “between a month and two.”
“As I speak to you today, millions of girls of secondary school age are missing out on education for the 27th consecutive day,” Mr. Abdi said. “We are urging them not to wait. Any day that we wait — it’s a day lost for those girls that are out of school.”
Taliban’s Afghanistan take-over after 20 years
During the Taliban’s preceding rule of Afghanistan from 1996-2001, they denied proper training to women and ladies and barred them from working and public life. Since their August 15 takeover of Afghanistan, following the withdrawal of U.S. and NATO forces after 20 years, the Taliban have come under growing worldwide stress to make sure girls have rights to schooling and work.
Statement by Mr. Abdi
Mr. Abdi said that in every meeting he pressed the Taliban “to let girls resume their learning,” calling it “critical for the girls themselves and for the country as a whole.”
When the Taliban were ousted from power in 2001 through the US-led coalition for harboring Osama bin Laden who masterminded the September 11 assaults at the United States, only a million Afghan kids have been in school levels, he said.
Over the beyond 20 years, that figure rose to nearly 10 million youngsters in any respect levels, inclusive of four million girls, Mr. Abdi said, and withinside the final decade, the variety of schools tripled from 6,000 to 18,000.
“Education gains of the past two decades must be strengthened and not rolled back,” he said.
2.6 million girls out of school
But the deputy leader of the United Nations Children’s Fund stated despite this progress, 4.2 million Afghan kids are out of schools including 2.6 million girls.
If all women are allowed to attend secondary school, Mr. Abdi said, efforts need to nevertheless be made to triumph over resistance from conservatives to permit them to get a secondary education.
“The authorities that I’ve met said that when they put in place the framework that they are working on, it will convince more parents to send their girls to school” because it will address concerns in conservative societies about separating girls and boys and females teachers, he said.
“So, that has to be seen,” Mr. Abdi said.
Malnourished children in hospital
While in Kabul, the UNICEF deputy leader stated he additionally visited a children’s hospital “and was shocked to see how packed it was with malnourished children, some of the babies.”
Mr. Abdi stated the fitness device and social offerings are on the verge of collapse, scientific materials are walking dangerously low, outbreaks of measles and watery diarrhea are increasing, and polio and COVID-19 continue to be severe concerns.
Children’s situation before Taliban’s takeover
“Even before the Taliban takeover, at least 10 million children across the country were in need of humanitarian assistance to survive,” he said, “and at least one million of these children are at risk of dying due to severe acute malnutrition if they are not treated immediately.”
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres entreated the world to save the Afghan financial system from collapsing and assist the Afghan people, an attraction echoed through Mr. Abdi “the situation is critical and it will only get worse.”