Loya Jirga of 3,000 to be held tomorrow

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Around 3,000 people from across Afghanistan have been invited to a gathering of Islamic clerics, expected to be held at the Loya Jirga Hall on Wednesday in Kabul, sources told TOLOnews.

Three representatives–mostly clerics–from each village are invited, the sources said, adding the meeting will last for three days and focus on various issues and it might be aired on the radio, but not on TV.

According to the sources, some traders and tribal elders have also been invited to the gathering.

“It is possible that in this meeting, the decision about the reopening of girls’ schools may be made–whether to allow girls to go to the school or not,” said Ahmad Munib Rasa, a political analyst.

The Islamic Emirate has not shared details about the agenda of the gathering, but the reopening of schools is said to be on the agenda.

The Islamic Emirate’s Spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, said that the Islamic Emirate’s leadership decided to hold the gathering following the call of many clerics to convene such a gathering.

“Our expectation is that all tribes, particularly women, be invited in such meetings, thus they can talk about their rights themselves,” said Marriam Maroof Arian, a female rights activist.

“Unless the views of the experts are included and the current challenges are examined, such views will bring Afghanistan into more problems and the current problems will not be solved,” said Javid Sandel, a political analyst.

Meanwhile, Human Rights Watch urged the participants to discuss human rights and women’s rights at the gathering.

“One will be hoping very much that the Taliban might use this Jirga to take steps to improve some of their violations of human rights particularly in regard to women and girls.

We know that there is a split of opinion within the Taliban,” said Heather Barr, associate director of the Women’s Rights Division at Human Rights Watch.

It is still unclear about how long the gathering will last, but the Kabul Polytechnic University, where the gathering is held, has dismissed students for a period of eight days.—Tolonews

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