June 15, 2024

Taliban Use Tasers, Guns Against Women Protesters

Thousands of women staged a rare demonstration against the brutal Taliban regime in the Afghan capital of Kabul on Wednesday, marching against a ban on beauty salons issued by the extremist government this month.

The regime responded by sending thugs to disperse the women with fire hoses, tasers, and gunfire.

The Taliban Announced an edict against beauty salons on July 3, which gave hundreds of establishments across the country less than a month to close down. The decree appears to have come from Taliban Supreme Leader Hibatullah Akhundzada.

Taliban officials claimed the ban was necessary because beauty salons offer services forbidden under Islam, such as plucking eyebrows and fitting wigs. They also decided that beauty services were a waste of money for their subjects and said that a serious look could distract a woman from prayer.

Human rights monitors noted that the order would not only deny women popular services, but would put thousands of women out of work because the majority of salon employees are women. The Taliban are driven of the country into poverty and hunger since seizing control in August 2021 after President Joe Biden’s disastrous withdrawal of American troops. Many Afghan salon employees say they are the only source of income for their families.

Burqa-clad Afghan women sit in front of a beauty salon with spray-painted images of abused women in Jalalabad on December 13, 2021. (WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP via Getty Images)

The Associated Press spoke on Wednesday with conservationists who bravely gathered in Kabul to protest the ban. “We are here for justice. We want work, food and freedom,” one woman said.

“All of us, between 50 and 60 women, took part. Our motto was work, bread, and freedom,” said another.

The women did not get work, food, and freedom but fire hoses, taser darts, and bullets. After a few hours, Taliban thugs doused the women with water and fired rifles into the air to disperse their march. Several exhibitors said they were hit with stun guns. Eyewitnesses said the Taliban dragged some protesters into vehicles and took them to unknown destinations.

“Today, we decided this protest to talk and negotiate. But today, no one came to talk to us, to listen to us. They didn’t pay any attention to us, and after a while, they dispersed us with air blasts and water cannon,” a disappointed protester tell Al Jazeera News.

A Taliban fighter walks past a salon with desecrated images of women using spray paint in Shar-e-Naw in Kabul on August 18, 2021. (Wakil Kohsar/AFP via Getty Images)

A Taliban fighter walks past a salon with desecrated images of women using spray paint in Shar-e-Naw in Kabul on August 18, 2021. (Wakil Kohsar/AFP via Getty Images)

The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan tweeted:

Reports of women’s peaceful protest being violently suppressed against the ban on beauty salons – the latest denial of women’s rights in Afghanistan – are deeply worrying. Afghans have the right to express opinions free of violence. De facto authorities must uphold this.

However, the organization failed to explain how they planned to stand up to the Taliban whatsoever.

In fact, the Taliban’s “Ministry of Welfare and Victory” continued the attack on women protesters by posting photos of “immoral” subjects seized in Kabul and destroyed in bonfires. The contraband included musical instruments.

“These materials, which were collected from immoral programs in Kabul and some provinces in recent months, were destroyed and caused the loss of our youth and the decline of society, gradually. Sharia,” said the ministry. Sharia means Islamic religious law.

The Ministry of Welfare and Victory rejected the criticism of excessive force against female protesters, saying they should “pay attention to the announcement we issued earlier.”

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