10 votes

How life has changed for Afghans since the Taliban takeover

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  1. riQQ

    On August 15, 2021, the Taliban overthrew Ashraf Ghani's government and seized power in Afghanistan. One year later, the country is facing multiple challenges that demand immediate global attention.

    Independent media had flourished under former presidents Hamid Karzai and Ashraf Ghani, human rights had seen a substantial improvement, an increased number of girls had started going to school and universities, and Afghanistan's middle class had experienced relative prosperity during the same period.

    Over the past twelve months, these achievements have been largely reversed.

    The Taliban have not fulfilled most of their promises under the 2020 Doha agreement. They have been reluctant to form an inclusive government in the country, while girls above grade 6 are not allowed to go to school. Also, women are not permitted to work in most sectors, and they can visit public parks only on specific days.

    Afghanistan's economy is now in freefall, with the UN warning of a humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in the country.

    International recognition is crucial for the Taliban to avoid potential economic collapse. Millions of Afghans are jobless and their bank accounts are frozen. Many people are selling their possessions to buy food, with urban communities facing food insecurity on levels similar to rural areas for the first time.

    In January, the United Nations made the "biggest-ever appeal" for humanitarian aid for a single country, saying it needed $4.4 billion (€3.9 billion) for Afghanistan to prevent the "world's most rapidly growing humanitarian crisis" from deteriorating further.

    According to Reporters Without Borders, 43% of Afghan media outlets have been shut down in the past three months. "Out of the 10,780 people working in Afghan newsrooms (8,290 men and 2,490 women) at the beginning of August 2021, only 4,360 were working in December (3,950 men and 410 women), or four out of ten journalists," according to the watchdog.

    5 votes