Afghan authorities tell female broadcasters to cover faces

Tolo News. Pic: YouTube

The authorities in Afghanistan have told local television broadcasters to ensure that female presenters cover their faces when on air.

A spokesperson for the Islamic Emirate’s Ministry for the Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice said that the hijab is required of Muslim women, and female television presenters with covered faces would serve as good role models for all women in Afghanistan.

The Islamic Emirate spokesman referred to the ruling as “advice” and it is not clear what will happen to anyone who fails to comply.

Afghanistan’s TOLOnews announced the new ruling on its official Twitter account on Thursday, stating that the order for presenters to cover up was non-negotiable.

“Representatives of the ministries of Vice and Virtue and Information and Culture called it a final verdict and not up for discussion,” TOLOnews tweeted.

The order has apparently been issued to all media outlets in Afghanistan.

It follows a recent directive from authorities that Afghan women must cover their faces in public although this does not appear to have been enforced so far.

After the Taliban returned to power in August 2021, they did not attempt to impose hijab on females but in recent weeks authorities have taken a harder line in their rhetoric.

The vast majority of Afghan women observe hijab or niqab but many women in urban areas such as Kabul do not cover their faces.

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