Former President Hamid Karzai said that the people of Afghanistan want their girls to return to schools and there “is no way that the country can live without our girls going to school”.
Karzai made the remarks on the BBC’s Best of Today.
“There is no way… that the country can live without our girls going to school. It can’t be. The Afghan people will not allow that and I am sure the schools for girls will reopen because that is what the Afghan people want and want clearly,” Karzai said.
It has been 120 days that female students beyond grade six have been banned from going to school.
This comes as Human Rights Watch expressed concerns and said that the banning of girls from going to school will cause an increase in early marriages for girls.
“This has already had an irreparable effect on the lives of hundreds of thousands of girls across the country. They have lost a year of education which they will never be able to get back. We know that one of the most important risk factors for child marriage and forced marriage is girls being blocked from access to education,” said Heather Barr, associate director of the Women's Rights Division at Human Rights Watch.
The Islamic Emirate’s decision to close schools for girls above grade six has faced repeated reactions inside the outside Afghanistan.
Earlier, many Afghan clerics, civil society members and some politicians have called on the Islamic Emirate to reopen schools for female students in grades 7-12.
“They are imposing a new law with each passing day, but there is a serious will to reopen the schools,” said Naveeda Khurasani, a women’s rights activist.
Earlier, UNICEF expressed concerns over the closing of secondary and high schools for female students.