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It hurts to know what you've lost – something

It hurts to know what you've lost – something

Some feel afraid and refrain from going out. Others refuse to over-adapt, so as not to accelerate evolution into an increasingly shrinking space.

A woman, of course, should not have a male relative as a mahram. But what is official in Afghanistan is that a woman must wear a mahram when she travels more than six miles, and not in her town or village. However, women are also harassed at home because they do not have a male relative with them.

Women are also required to cover their faces, but what officially applies is “decent veiling.” What it is, is up to interpretation. In January, a series of crackdowns began against women, who were imprisoned, ill-treated, and accused of not wearing the “proper hijab.” Taliban rule is tightening, and unpredictability is part of the repression.

It is often said that the clock cannot be turned back. It can feel like a miserable spell when you receive one negative news after another. but it's true. Girls deprived of their education know that they have the right to do so, and so do their families. Various groups demand that schools be opened for girls and women, due to their need for community.

“Girls deprived of their education know they have the right to it.”

In a report published by this newspaper, a father recounts how proud he is of his daughter, and that he, who is illiterate, depends entirely on allowing her to continue studying. Nasima, who would have graduated from high school by now, trades books with her classmates. “The Taliban cannot close the doors of our minds,” she says.

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A woman I was in contact with in Kabul is forced to work from home, and no longer dares to go out due to increasing harassment. She describes how painful it is to see how women in other countries can live the life they know they have a right to. Through her window, she sees men moving freely in the streets. It makes her depressed and disappointed.

So it can be a painful, issue of the hour: knowing what you are entitled to, and what you used to have but no longer have.

Another person in Kabul posts beautiful photos on social media and is always ready to capture the moments with his mobile camera. She can still get to her job. She has an indomitable zest for life that can be seen in the photos. While Kabul was covered in a blanket of snow, she commented on her photo: That's why they said Kabul should be without gold but not without snow.

Women thank me for raising their voices, for connecting, and for caring. It feels so useless and frustrating. But this is what I can do now.