Taliban authorities in Afghanistan have “beaten and detained” a professor who protested against the ban on women’s education, he said on Friday (February 3). Ismail Mashal tore up his degrees on live television in protest against the globally criticised ban. In a report by the news agency AFP, Mashal’s aide Farid Ahmad Fazli was quoted as saying that the academic was “mercilessly beaten”. 

Fazli said that the professor, who has worked as a lecturer for more than 10 years at three Kabul universities, was taken away in a very disrespectful manner by members of “the Islamic Emirate”, the Taliban government. 


In the viral video, veteran journalism lecturer Mashal had said, “From today, I don’t need these diplomas any more because this country is no place for an education. If my sister and my mother can’t study, then I don’t accept this education.”

Disclaimer: WION cannot independently verify the authenticity of photos and videos shared on social media.

Ismail Mashal a university professor who became bookseller under Taliban regime. He burned his educational credentials on a live tv debate in protest to Taliban ban on women’s education. #Let_her_learn

— Gawharshad Media (@GawharshadMedia) February 1, 2023


Here’s the old video:

Initially, there was no confirmation of Mashal’s detention, but later a Taliban official confirmed the detention. Abdul Haq Hammad, who is the director of the Ministry of Information and Culture, tweeted: “Teacher Mashal had indulged in provocative actions against the system for some time. The security agencies took him for investigation.” 

Mashal tore his academic degree and certificates on local Tolonews in December. The incident was shared multiple times on social media forums and also got media attention globally. 

Fazli said that Mashal was arrested on Thursday despite having “committed no crime” and he was giving free books to women and men. He said that the professor is still in detention and we don’t know where he is being held. 

(With inputs from agencies) 


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