In a move that has attracted widespread criticism, the Taliban has banned women from travelling distances longer than 72 kilometers alone.
Any woman who wishes to travel beyond that limit will have to be accompanied by a close male relative.
The Taliban took control after the US pulled out its soldiers from the troubled region after 20 years.
Reports say the Taliban have been ‘urging taxi drivers not to play music in their cars or give lifts to women without a hijab.’
Female TV journalists have also been instructed to wear hijabs.
Since taking power in August, the Taliban have imposed various restrictions on women and girls.
Many are not particularly surprised given the Taliban’s precedence. They’re rather shocked at how quickly they abandoned their initial pledge to treat women better.
While in several provinces, local Taliban authorities have reopened schools, many girls have no access secondary education.
How are locals reacting?
Earlier in the month, a group of women staged a protest demanding the right to education. They also pushed for jobs and political representation from the Taliban government.
Given that the Taliban has been trying really hard to gain international recognition and attract the aid its failing economy needs dearly, many thought they’d make concessions to women.
Afghanistan is one of the world’s poorest countries. International recognition means countries will now be free to trade with them without fears of sanctions.
Foreign aid on the other hand will help prop up the failing local currency.
Many locals now fear that what happened during the Taliban’s previous stint in power is starting to happen again.
In those days, women’s rights were severely curtailed. They were forced to wear the all-covering burqa and only allowed to leave home with a male chaperone.
They were also banned from working and schooling in those days.
What happens now?
Will the Taliban adopt a more-modern approach in their treatment of women in exchange for revitalizing their economy?
Time shall tell.