The Taliban have named deputy ministers, double down on all men’s teams

The Taliban on Tuesday expanded their interim cabinet by naming deputy ministers but failed to appoint any women despite international outcry after the initial presentation of all their male cabinet lineups earlier this month.

The international community has warned that they will judge the Taliban by their actions and that the recognition of the Taliban-led government will be linked to the treatment of women and minorities.

Under their previous rule in Afghanistan in the late 1990s, the Taliban banned girls and women from school, work and public life.

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Taliban fighters sit in the back of a pickup truck as they stop on a hill in Kabul, Afghanistan, Sunday, September 19, 2021. (AP Photo / Felipe Dana)

Taliban government spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid defended the recent addition to the cabinet at a news conference on Tuesday, saying it included members of ethnic minorities such as Hazara and could later include women.

Mujahid was outraged at the international conditions for recognition, saying there was no reason to stop it.

“It is the responsibility of the United Nations to recognize our government (and) to establish diplomatic relations with us for other countries, including European, Asian and Islamic countries,” he said.

The Taliban have formed their current cabinet as an interim government, proposing that change is still possible, but they have never said whether there will be an election.

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Mujahid was recently asked about the restrictions imposed on girls and women, including the decision not to allow girls in grades six to 12 to return to the classroom for the time being.

Mujahid proposed it was a temporary decision, and “it will be announced soon whether they will be able to go to school.” He said plans were being made to allow them to return but did not elaborate.

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Boys in grades six to twelve resume their studies on the weekends.

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