Taliban promises freedom while killing women for not wearing a head covering

The Islamist group had said the same day that “there would be no discrimination against women” – within Sharia law.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

Despite their leaders’ promise that they would safeguard women’s rights, Taliban fighters killed a woman in Afghanistan last week for not wearing a head covering in public, AP reported Thursday.

In an unprecedented press conference that same day, Taliban leaders had promised that in their renewed takeover of the country, “women will be afforded all their rights, whether it is in work or other activities, because women are a key part of society. We are guaranteeing all their rights – within the limits of Islam.”

It is the qualification that Sharia law must be obeyed that has Afghani women scared, and their supporters worried.

U.S. President Joe Biden and other Western leaders have warned the Taliban that they will not tolerate a return to the severe restrictions the extreme Islamists put in place on women during the group’s short-lived rule of Afghanistan in the late 1990s. This included women not being able to go outside without a male escort let alone to practice their professions, and preventing girls from going to school, besides enforcement of a strict dress code that enjoined full body and head covering.

But the restrictions have already begun, according to interviews with brave women who want to get the news out. Women are being beaten in the streets for not being properly covered, according to reports on social media. One told Fox News Friday that “no one feels safe at this moment,” because “they haven’t changed. They are worse. In fact, they are stronger than before. They are barbaric.”

She spoke of fighters “searching door to door … going into hundreds of homes … going through mobile phones” for information or pictures that could be considered evidence against women of their noncompliance with Islamic law.

A Kabul University student quoted in India Today said, “My dignity, my pride, even my existence as a girl, my life — they are all in danger…I may have to kill myself when they come to my home. I’ve been talking to my friends, this is what all of us, all of us, are planning to do. Death is better than being taken by them.”

The women are voting with their feet – when they can. NPR reported about a doctor in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif who was threatened for months by a Taliban leader because she had given his child-bride a contraceptive injection before the group’s takeover of her city. She fled as soon as the extremists entered, and said that her flight was almost 100% full of unaccompanied Afghan women, a very unusual sight even in Taliban-free times.

Almost the only chance now for anyone to get out, whether women or men who fear retribution for having helped the Western forces who have been in Afghanistan over the last 20 years, is at the airport in the capital, Kabul. But as one American woman trapped there told Fox News Saturday night, she has “no hope” of making it to the airfield.

Echoing other reports, she said that there were over a dozen checkpoints she’d have to get through first that were manned by the Taliban – and she had already been whipped once at one of the enforced stops. She was now in hiding and “terrified,” with several Afghan relatives, American contractors, and children.

“We are devastated,” she said. “We’re scared for our lives. Every moment that a car passes by, I feel like they are going to pull in and execute us. I don’t know if I’m going to see my children again.”

She had one overwhelming message for Biden: “Please, Mr. President, please evacuate us. We need help.”