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United States restricts visas to Taliban officials

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Kabul: The US State Department has imposed visa restrictions on current and former Taliban officials, members of non-governmental armed groups, and other individuals who may be involved in violence against women and girls in Afghanistan.

Anthony Blinken, the US foreign minister, said in a statement today that he believes that these people, by applying policies and restrictions, have hindered women’s work and their ability to choose a job and their freedom of action, expression and privacy.

It is stated in this declaration that the policies, restrictions and violence applied by these people have prevented women and girls from accessing secondary and higher education. In addition, these people have been involved in violence and illegal detention of women and girls who did not follow the policies of the Taliban, and their family members.

The US foreign minister has said that the restriction on issuing visas also includes the family members of the mentioned people who have played a role in imposing restrictions and violence against women. According to American law, spouse and children are considered close family members.

Anthony Blinken has said that contrary to the Taliban’s promises to respect the human rights of Afghans; they have issued a series of policies and decrees that have prevented women and girls from fully participating in public life, accessing secondary education, and working in most sectors.

The US foreign minister has asked other countries to take similar measures and emphasize the message that only a government in Afghanistan will be legitimate that represents all the people of that country and supports the human rights of individuals.

The U.S. State Department has imposed this restriction while the Taliban leader yesterday, in a meeting with intelligence officials of the caretaker government, demanded the full implementation of his decree on women’s rights.

He has told the intelligence officials of the Taliban to pay special attention to the implementation of Sharia law. This six-article decree is mostly devoted to issues related to women’s marriage. In this decree, it was said that a woman is not property, but a “free and noble human being” and the consent of adult girls is necessary at the time of marriage.

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