Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said this in an interview with The New York Times on Wednesday.
The Taliban have returned to power in Afghanistan this month, but are trying to be more moderate. In his first interview with foreign media, a Mujahid spokesman emphasized that the Taliban had changed in recent years. “We want to work on the future and forget what happened in the past,” he said.
During the previous Taliban rule in the 1990s, all forms of music were banned in Afghanistan except religious songs, because, according to the movement’s leaders, they could evoke unclean thoughts in people.
In recent days, radio and television stations in Afghanistan have stopped broadcasting music, with the exception of Islamic songs. However, it was not yet clear whether this had happened to Taliban regulations or whether it was self-censorship to prevent conflict with insurgents.
Under the previous Taliban regime, a number of strict rules applied to women who were not allowed to leave home unaccompanied by a male relative, were not allowed to study and do most jobs. This week, Mujahideen called on Afghan women to stay home for the time being because the Taliban had not been trained to respect them.
However, according to Mujahide’s Wednesday, fears that the Taliban would force women to stay at home in the future are unfounded. “If they go to school, office, university or hospital, they will not need a male guardian escort,” the spokesman said. According to him, the escort of a male guardian will be necessary only if the women travel on a journey lasting three days or more. (čtk)