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Afghanistan Struggle for Education and Human Rights

In Afghanistan, under the Taliban, it is illegal for girls or women to attend school. Sehar Saba and Sajeda Hayat, leaders of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), work in Afghanistan and in Pakistan to organize resistance and provide education and human rights assistance to girls and women.

"The situation was not good even before the fundamentalists [took power]. But since 1992, Afghanistan is like a big prison, for women especially. Women are banned from all outside public activities. They can’t go to school or to work. They can’t even go to a doctor without accompaniment of male relatives. And they have to wear the burqa to cover themselves completely," says Sehar.

RAWA runs clandestine home-based schools for girls and boys as well as literacy classes for women, targeting women who are widows and have no source of income. The organization also runs schools in refugee camps in Pakistan.

Learn more from Afghani women themselves:

Source: Out of the Shadows: Women of Afghanistan Educate and Organize for Human Rights, Amnesty Now, Fall 2000.