‘Women cannot be ministers; they must give birth,’ says Taliban spokesperson in TV interview

New Delhi: As the Taliban-led caretaker government in Afghanistan prepares to take the oath of office, the criticism of naming a non-inclusive government grew stronger on Thursday, when a spokesperson for the militant group made disparaging remarks about women.

Taliban spokesperson Sayed Zekrullah Hashimi told Tolo News in a televised interview that women cannot be ministers. He went on to say that it’s as if you tied something around her neck that she couldn’t carry. In the interview, he also stated that women should give birth.

Concerning women’s protests, Sayed Zekrullah Hashimi stated, “Women protesters cannot represent all women in Afghanistan.”

The Taliban’s statement comes at a time when Afghan women have been protesting on the streets against the insurgent group, putting their lives in danger. Concerns have been raised that the Taliban may be reverting to its old ways.

Local media reported that the Taliban drove away Afghan women protesting the all-male Afghanistan’s new interim government in Kabul. In the crackdown on dissent, the Taliban used whips and sticks against female protesters, according to CNN.

During the Taliban’s rule from 1996 to 2001, women were not permitted to work, girls were not permitted to attend school, and women were required to cover their faces and be accompanied by a male relative if they wished to leave their homes.

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