Top UNHCR Official Voices Concerns Over Closed Girls’ Schools

It has been over 270 days that the girls’ school above grade six have remained closed in Afghanistan.

Kelly T. Clements, United Nations Deputy High Commissioner for Refugees has expressed concerns over the closing of girls’ schools in Afghanistan.

Clements paid a visit to the western province of Herat, where she visited a girls’ school.

“Girls in school – women as full participants in the economic development of Afghanistan – millions of women & girls need the space to engage, contribute & lead. I saw some of that potential today in Herat. Despite everything, they have hope. We do too,” Clements said on Twitter.

This comes as female students said that education is their basic right and urged the Islamic Emirate to reopen schools beyond grade six for girls.

An education center which is teaching girls from grade 1-12 has been established on the outskirts of the capital, Kabul. The students and teachers at the education center are women (The name of the education center has been withheld due to the sensitivity of the issue).

“It is unjust that the Taliban are not allowing us to go to the school because Almighty God said in the Koran that education is mandatory for men and women,” said Raihana Noori, a student.

“I came here to study and will never give up on education because I want to have a bright future,” said Samira, a student.

There are a total of 300 female students in the education center.

“We have approximately 313 students. We have various sections here. Computers, tailoring, miniature-painting–and since the Islamic Emirate came to power the number of students has surged,” said a teacher.

“We support them in continuing their education and we request that the Islamic Emirate reopens the schools for girls,” the head of the education center said.

It has been over 270 days that the girls’ school above grade six have remained closed in Afghanistan.

Earlier, the Islamic Emirate said it is working on a plan to facilitate the reopening of the schools but there has yet to be any progress in this regard.

Top UNHCR Official Voices Concerns Over Closed Girls’ Schools