veiled muslim woman
Photo by Abdel Achkouk on

Two years since the Taliban stormed back to power in Afghanistan after 20 years of war against the United States and its allies, life has changed dramatically for many Afghans, particularly women.

Ahead of the August 15 anniversary of the fall of Kabul, four Afghans — a businesswoman determined to keep her factory open, a farmer relieved by the war's end, a former Taliban fighter proud to serve the new government and a medical student forced to give up her studies — told AFP how the changes have impacted them.

The entrepreneur working to keep her business afloat

Arezo Osmani was "terrified and sad" when the Taliban returned to power, promising the imposition of a stringent interpretation of Islam that has seen women barred from many avenues for work and education.

"I didn't leave my room for 10 days, I thought that everything was over for me, and that it was the same for all Afghans," said Osmani, 30, who started a company producing reusable sanitary pads in 2021.

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