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  • Gali Weiss

"I See Tears in my Books Every Night"

It is harder and harder, darker and darker, to be a woman living in Afghanistan. Being able to attend university seemed a light of hope for some women, a way of gaining a purpose for themselves and their country's future. It still is, but held only by a thread.

The reports I receive from my contacts who are attending universities reveal the situations of poverty and extreme restrictions, including shocking incidents that disturb each woman, again and again. Yet the women continue to attend.

The following are some of their accounts:

"Yesterday, unfortunately, I witnessed a bad and heartbreaking incident in our course.

A girl did not cover her face and her hair was slightly visible, and when the Taliban saw her, they responded to her in a brutal way, beating her and then taking her with them, and we do not know what happened to her at all. I was totally hurt mentally when I saw this scene of destruction.

I see tears in my books every night and I wish one day to continue my studies in a place that is peaceful, and to have a happy life, because it is the right of every human being to be happy and live in a safe place, which has been taken away from us in Afghanistan."

This is the latest account I received on 18 June 2022:

"The level of education in Afghanistan is very poor. The lack of experienced teachers has caused some poor students to teach in the faculties. The absence of teachers has broken the morale of our students because in the current situation in Afghanistan, poverty and unemployment have increased and some students cannot afford to spend money to achieve their dreams.

The Taliban do not give women their rights, they think women are very weak and incapable, and they have imposed many restrictions, including saying that men and women cannot work in the same media, even in the university where I study. I do not have the right to speak freely, we do not even have the right to say a word to the media, and whatever problem we have, I cannot talk about it because I am not allowed to talk.

Restrictions for women are increasing every day. Cars that have women must have curtains. Girls cannot wear any colour except black.

And still the biggest problems in the field of education is the lack of experienced professors and the lack of facilities in universities, such as the lack of regular electricity, the lack of electronic devices, and the lack of access to the media to inform the world about the realities of our society."

Photo: Screen shot of video on Twitter post @Suhrab Sira 18 May 2022

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