Taliban forces Afghan shopkeepers to cover mannequins’ faces

Taliban forces Afghan shopkeepers to cover mannequins' faces. Screen grab of AP footage of Kabul shop.

The Taliban is forcing Afghan shopkeepers to cover mannequins’ faces. Mannequins in women’s clothing shops across Kabul now have cloth and bags covering their faces, the Associated Press reported on Monday.

The Taliban initially wanted the mannequins beheaded. While some shopkeepers obeyed, others weren’t having it.

Shopkeepers complained that they would not be able to advertise their clothes, or that they would have to damage valuable mannequins.

The Taliban has now come to a peculiar compromise, allowing shopkeepers to have mannequins in their windows, if the mannequins’ faces are covered.

This policy is based on a rigid interpretation of Islamic law that prohibits statues and images of depicting humans, since they could be worshiped as idols.

Shopkeepers are now trying their best to follow the Taliban’s orders, while also drawing customers.

This news comes as the Taliban continues to strip Afghans, especially women, of more and more of their rights.

Last month, the terror group banned women from universities. Afghan women are mourning the loss of education, which was a lifeline for many under Afghanistan’s deeply patriarchal society. One university student told the BBC that the Taliban had “destroyed the only bridge that could connect me with my future.”

Following the university ban, a small but mighty group of Afghan women took to the streets to protest. Footage showed around 24 protesters, donning hijabs, chanting in a Kabul neighbourhood.

Public executions also returned to Afghanistan last month. More than a dozen senior Taliban officials attended the first officially-confirmed public execution since US-led forces allowed the Taliban to assume control of the country last year.

The Taliban has also banned female aid workers last month in Afghanistan. Following the ban, the UN suspended some of its humanitarian programmes in the country.

Time will tell when Afghans will see brighter days, as the Taliban seems to be swallowing the country whole.

World News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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