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Women can attend university, but mixed-gender classes will be banned: Afghan education minister

KABUL: The higher education minister in the new Taliban government Abdul Baqi Haqqani announced that women in Afghanistan can continue to study in universities, including at postgraduate levels, but classrooms will be gender-segregated and Islamic dress is compulsory.

During the press conference, he laid out the new policies. Female university students will face restrictions, including a compulsory dress code. Haqqani said hijabs will be mandatory but did not specify if this meant compulsory headscarves or also compulsory face coverings.

Gender segregation will also be enforced, he said. “We will not allow boys and girls to study together,” he said. “We will not allow co-education.”

Haqqani said the subjects being taught would also be reviewed. While he did not elaborate, he said he wanted graduates of Afghanistan’s universities to be competitive with university graduates in the region and the rest of the world.

The Taliban banned music and art during their previous time in power. This time around television has remained and news channels still show women presenters, but the Taliban messaging has been erratic.

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