Why TIME Dedicated an Issue to Afghan Women Around the World

Over the course of “the Longest Battle”—a reputation we have been already utilizing again in 2009—TIME printed greater than a dozen covers about Afghanistan and the Taliban. Maybe one of the best identified was in 2010 and featured a surprising and disturbing portrait of Bibi Aisha, a then 18-year-old whose husband—a Taliban fighter—had minimize off her nostril and ears after she tried to flee their compelled marriage. The story that ran with that cowl, written by senior correspondent Aryn Baker, explored what would possibly occur to Afghan girls if the U.S. have been to drag out of Afghanistan.

At this time after all that’s not a hypothetical. To mark one yr since Kabul fell to the Taliban—a yr by which girls have misplaced most of the freedoms that they had for the earlier 20 years—govt editor Naina Bajekal collaborated with journalists Amie Ferris-Rotman and Zahra Joya on a particular mission. The highly effective visuals within the bundle have been overseen by TIME’s Sangsuk Sylvia Kang, Paul Moakley, and Katherine Pomerantz. Working with girls writers and photographers all over the world, and supported by a grant from the Pulitzer Middle, the workforce got down to illuminate the experiences of girls who needed to go away Afghanistan, pursuing new desires whilst they continue to be deeply involved about family members again residence.

The result’s our worldwide cowl for this subject. It tells the tales of eight Afghan girls, every of whom since final August has fled the Taliban to start out a brand new life in places starting from Fort Myers, Fla., to Good, France, to São Paulo. For Ferris–Rotman and Joya, this mission was significantly private. Ferris-Rotman was beforehand primarily based in Afghanistan, the place she established a company to mentor and practice Afghan girls journalists. Joya, one in every of TIME’s 2022 Girls of the 12 months, grew to become one of many many new Afghan refugees final August. From her residence in London, she runs Rukhshana Media, which is devoted to telling the tales of Afghan girls. Rukhshana Media shall be publishing this mission by itself web site, in English and Dari, the place we hope a lot of its readers will see themselves mirrored within the tales.

Learn Extra: What Afghanistan’s Girls Stand to Lose

The journeys of those eight girls are diversified. Some are tales of hope. A few of concern. All are tales of resilience. “What we’d like isn’t pity and empathy,” says Masouma Tajik, a 23-year-old Rutgers College pupil who left Kabul for Kyiv, solely to need to rebuild her life as soon as extra. “What we’d like is alternatives so we will make our personal approach.”

Former Afghan air pressure pilot Raihana Rahimi, who seems with Hasina Najibi on the quilt and was interviewed by Afghan journalist Farahnaz Forotan, expresses the same sentiment. “I’m decided to discover a approach again into my occupation,” she says. “That is the dream that retains me alive.”

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