Female Protesters Gather in Kabul

Taliban says Western Union is resuming operations
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 3, 2021 12:01 AM CDT
Female Protesters Gather in Kabul
Women gather to demand their rights under the Taliban rule during a protest in Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Sept. 3, 2021.   (AP Photo/Wali Sabawoon)

(Newser) – A few dozen protesters have gathered outside the presidential palace in Kabul, urging the country's new Taliban leadership to uphold women's rights achieved under Western patronage and include women in the upcoming government. At one gate on Friday, around a dozen women held up small printed pages urging for "A heroic Cabinet with the presence of women." The protesters chanted slogans asserting human rights and saying they did not want to return to the past. A document circulated by protesters demanded that Afghan women are granted full rights to education, social, and political contributions in the country's future, and general freedoms including that of free speech, reports the AP.

The Taliban, meanwhile, says Western Union will resume its operations in Afghanistan, opening a rare conduit for foreign funds to flow into the cash-strapped country. The group's cultural commission spokesman, Ahmadullah Muttaqi, announced the move Friday, the AP reports. The American financial services giant had halted operations in Afghanistan when the Taliban took power in the capital on Aug. 15. The opening will be especially welcomed by Afghans with foreign relatives abroad. Hundreds of people have been lining up daily outside Afghan banks to withdraw cash. Withdrawals have been limited to $200 per day and cash machines aren't working. The overcrowding means that not everyone manages to obtain money on a given day.

(Read more Afghanistan stories.)

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