Afghanistan: School girls caught in the crossfire
KABUL, Afghanistan — It was one of the few facets of Afghan life where the United States could claim success.
Now a series of assaults on schoolgirls in the north of the country are causing both teachers and politicians here to question whether the nation’s education system can continue to improve following the withdrawal of foreign combat troops in 2014.
"If the government does not pay enough attention, the future will be very dark," said Mawlawi Abdulwahab Erfan, a senator representing Takhar province, where the incidents occurred.
Hundreds of students have fallen ill in recent weeks after their drinking water was apparently spiked and poison was sprayed into their classrooms.
The attacks have intensified the debate about the Taliban’s reemergence and possible return to power.
When the fundamentalist movement ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001, girl’s education was severely restricted and only around one million children in total were enrolled in schools at all.