Taliban say Afghan boys' schools to reopen, no mention of girls


FILE PHOTO: Schoolboys watch Afghanistan's Charlie Chaplin, Karim Asir, 25, perform at a school in Kabul, Afghanistan September 5, 2018. Picture taken September 5, 2018. REUTERS/Mohammad Ismail/File Photo

(Reuters) - Afghan schools will open for boys from Saturday, the new Taliban ministry of education said in a statement that gave no indication of when girls might be able to go back to their classes.

More than a month after the movement seized the capital Kabul, most educational institutions have remained closed as the Taliban have struggled to reopen the economy and restore normal life in the cities.

At some of the schools that have managed to operate, girls up to the sixth grade have attended, and women students have gone to university classes. But high schools for girls have been closed.

Taliban officials have said they will not replicate the fundamentalist policies of the previous Taliban government, which banned girls' education, and they have promised that girls will be able to study so long as they do so in segregated classrooms.

While the Taliban did not order schools to close after their takeover, the movement has said the security situation meant that many activities for women and girls were not yet possible, and the latest statement did not mention girls at all.

It said state and private schools at primary and secondary level as well as official madrasa religious schools would be open from Saturday.

"All teachers and male students should attend school," the statement said.

(Reporting by James Mackenzie, Editing by William Maclean)

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