Two girls' schools have been destroyed in Afghanistan's western province of Farah, officials said on Tuesday.
A female high school was blown up late Monday night on the outskirts of the provincial capital of Farah after unknown individuals had beaten up the schoolmaster, provincial councilor Shah Mahmood Naeemi said.
School authorities had already received threats to close the school beforehand, according to Naeemi.
The school was located on the outskirts of Farah city, about 20 kilometres from the centre, provincial council member Dadullah Qaneh said.
The night before, another female school on the outskirts of the provincial capital was destroyed by unknown gunmen. Local officials believed the Taliban were behind both incidents.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, however, denied destroying the schools in Farah, saying the schools were destroyed due to conflicts over ‘internal appointments by the Education Ministry in the province.’ In late March, the militants had issued a statement on the eve of the beginning of the new educational year in Afghanistan encouraging families to send their school-aged children to regular schools as well as religious educational centres for learning basis issues.
Women and girls were not allowed to attend schools under the Taliban regime for five years in Afghanistan in the 1990s.
With ongoing peace talks between US and Taliban envoys, Afghan women have increasingly voiced concerns over losing hard-gained freedoms including the right to education and work in a post-peace deal situation.
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