The Taliban are banning women's beauty salons in Afghanistan, a government spokesperson said.
The move is the latest effort by the Taliban to curb women's rights and freedoms in the country.
While Mohammad Sidik Akif Mahajar, a spokesperson for Taliban-run Virtue and Vice Ministry, did not provide details on the ban, he did confirm the validity of the contents of a letter making rounds on social media, reports say.
The letter, with an issue date of June 24, conveys an order by supreme leader Hibatullah Akhundzada to all women's beauty salons in the capital of Kabul and all other provinces to wind down their businesses within a month, according to the Associated Press. After the one-month period, businesses must provide a report as proof of closure. There is no reason given for the ruling.
Just days before, Akhundzada claimed his government had taken steps for the betterment of women's lives in Afghanistan, AP said.
The United Nations said Tuesday that it is working to get the ban reversed.
"UNAMA calls on the de facto authorities to halt the edict closing beauty salons. This new restriction on women's rights will impact negatively on the economy [and] contradicts stated support for women entrepreneurship," the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan said on Twitter.
UNAMA calls on the de facto authorities to halt the edict closing beauty salons. This new restriction on women’s rights will impact negatively on the economy&contradicts stated support for women entrepreneurship. UNAMA remains engaged w/stakeholders seeking reversal of the bans.
— UNAMA News (@UNAMAnews) July 4, 2023
Previously, the Taliban instituted a ban prohibiting girls from continuing education beyond grade six. It also banned women and girls playing sports, and from many forms of employment, among other things.
The Taliban's harsh rulings have triggered international outrage.
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