Two weeks ago, the Taliban unveiled some measures, including the prohibition of the practice of any sport that exposes women’s bodies. “They may face a situation where their face and body are not covered. Islam does not allow women to be seen like this. It is the media age and there will be photos and videos, therefore people will see them.” Deputy Head of the Culture Commission Ahmadullah Wasiq told Australian outlet SBS News After the announcement by the Taliban-made Cabinet, where there are no women, Afghan women again demonstrated in the streets of Kabul.
For their part, last Sunday the 26 players and 54 relatives of the Afghan women’s youth soccer team crossed the borders and after being refugees in Pakistan, arrived in the city of Lisbon in Portugal. The soccer players between the ages of 14 and 16, along with their families, were transferred by the Operation Soccer Balls organization.
“Will they be able to play soccer again? They don’t know,” lamented the player Khalida Popal in the conference she gave at the World Football Summit in Madrid on Thursday. She was in charge of founding the women’s soccer team in Afghanistan in 2007. The first time she left her country she was 9 years old. Before, he played ball in the backyard of his house under the watchful eye of his mother, who was a physical education teacher, and without shouting goals so as not to attract attention. Afterward, he left and came back many times. In 2011, he received death threats and since then, he has taken refuge in Denmark.
“Soccer is a very powerful empowerment tool. When an Afghan woman plays a match, she doesn’t do it just for the result, she also does it because she fights alongside her teammates for their right to play soccer,” he told the Spanish newspaper Marca. Shabnam Mobare, the current captain, was one of the players who made up the team in 2018 when the national team players denounced the president of the federation, Keramuddin Karim, for sexual abuse committed between 2013 and that year.