Taliban orders male tailors to stop making women’s clothing

In a new order by the Taliban’s vice and virtue authority, male tailors have been barred from making garments for women in Kabul – which is common practice in the city.

Tailors said the order will have a major impact on them financially as many tailor shops cater only to female customers.

“I have worked in this profession for over 10 years and most of my customers are women,” said Abdullah Hamdard, a tailor in Kabul. “Recently, vice and virtue officials came to my shop and asked me to stop making women’s dresses.”

“Taliban said if this is repeated, you will be fined and your shop will be closed. This comes under such challenging economic times,” he added.

Another tailor in Kabul, Ishaq Noori, confirmed the ban on making women’s dresses, saying that they have been warned they will be fined and their shops will be closed if they accept female customers.

Women-run shops closed

Meanwhile, as part of this order, dressmaking shops run by women have been closed by the Taliban and the owners told to work from home.

Aisha Begzad, the owner of one dressmaking shop in Kabul, said she had at least 10 workers and that the shop is her family’s only source of income.

“The vice and virtue officials of the Taliban came to my shop and asked me to close it and work from home and [they said] I do not have the right to work out[side] of home anymore,” she added.

Another woman, Freshta, who worked at a tailor, spoke out about the restrictions being imposed on women by the Taliban.

“Girls were deprived of schooling after the Taliban takeover, and now as I want to learn something, the Taliban closed this opportunity for us as well,” she said.

Women have been barred from many social activities under Taliban rule over the past 15 months.

Apart from imposing strict dress codes on women, the Taliban has also closed high schools for girls, restricted university course choices for women, imposed restrictions on women visiting parks, and most recently banned air travel for women unless they are accompanied by a male relative.