Rwanda: Staff and students of only Afghan girls’ boarding school flee to Africa

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The move came days after the Taliban toppled the government in Afghanistan, where girls and women were barred from education when Islamist militants were last in power.

“Last week, we completed the departure from Kabul of nearly 250 students, faculty, staff and their families,” said Shabana Basij-Rasikh, who co-founded the School of Leadership Afghanistan (SOLA) in the Afghan capital.

“Everyone is on their way, via Qatar, to the nation of Rwanda where we intend to start a semester abroad for all of our students,” Basij-Rasikh said in a statement. series of tweets.

The school president said she hoped they could all return eventually. “Our resettlement is not permanent … When circumstances on the ground allow, we hope to return home to Afghanistan. For now, I ask for the confidentiality of our community,” she wrote.

Basij-Rasikh is highly decorated and co-founded the school when she was still a teenager, “with the mission of providing access to quality education for girls in her country of origin”. according to the school site.

Her messages came days after she reported burning student files “not to erase them, but to protect them and their families.”

Basij-Rasikh recounted how in 2002, a few months after the fall of the Taliban following the US-led invasion, many Afghan girls were invited to participate in a placement test because the militants had burned down. the files of all the students to erase their existence. . She wrote that she was one of those girls.

The Taliban have taken control of Afghanistan.  What does this mean for women and girls?

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he was six when the Taliban came to power and was enrolled in a network of secret classes to complete his studies.

“I was scared. I didn’t want to continue. I didn’t want to be killed by the Taliban. My parents were always the ones who insisted,” she said. CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in a 2012 interview.

Shabana says it was her father who inspired her to go to school, telling her, “You can lose everything you have in your life. Your money can be stolen. But the only thing that will always remain with you, that’s what’s here. And he was pointing his head. And he said, ‘Your education is the biggest investment in your life. Never regret it.’ “

This experience prompted her to create SOLA, which means peace in the local Pashtun language. In her Twitter feed published on August 20, she wrote: “As the world focuses on the drama – these Afghans who manage to get out of it – the fire in me to invest in the education of Afghan girls who have no way out becomes more and more shining, stronger and stronger, ”she wrote. added
The Ministry of Education in Rwanda said he was looking forward to to “welcome the SOLA community in Rwanda for your study program”.

Uganda welcomes Afghan refugees

SOLA’s relocation to Rwanda comes amid the arrival of the first group of evacuees from Afghanistan to neighboring Uganda.

The 51 Afghans disembarked Wednesday morning in Uganda aboard a private chartered flight, according to a statement from the country’s foreign ministry.

US announces new destinations for evacuees as Kabul airport confusion continues

The new arrivals will stay temporarily in the East African country before being resettled elsewhere.

Uganda will welcome “Afghan nationals at risk and other nationals in transit to the United States of America and other destinations around the world,” the statement said.

Uganda will host 2,000 Afghan refugees for three months following a US request, according to Minister of State for Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees Esther Anyakun Davina.



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