Some of the top universities in the UK are offering Afghan women free learning. The universities have made the commitment to women and girls in Afghanistan after the Taliban banned them from learning in universities and higher education institutions in Afghanistan.
The move is the latest move against women’s rights after the regime change in 2021.
Twenty institutions have teamed up with FutureLearn to offer 1200 courses that can be accessed online.
FutureLearn was set up by The Open University in 2012 as an online learning platform, offering courses from many of the world’s top universities. They will offer free learning to Afghan women for as long as they are banned from learning in Afghanistan.
Jo Johnson, the chairman of FutureLearn described this as a lifeline to the women in Afghanistan.
“For girls and women who can access the internet and afford the time, this could be a lifeline,” he said.
“While this is of course no silver bullet — poor connectivity, poverty and language barriers mean many women may not be able to access the material — it can nonetheless play a valuable part in enabling women in Afghanistan to assert their inalienable human right to education.”
Whilst women in Afghanistan face increased oppression, many world leaders have come forward to condemn this move, with even countries like the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia asking for the Taliban to reverse the decision.
A joint statement was recently released from nations, including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Switzerland, the UK, the US, who collaboratively said:
“A stable, economically viable, and peaceful Afghanistan is only attainable and sustainable if all Afghans, including women and girls, can fully, equally, and meaningfully participate in and contribute to the country’s future and development.”