Over 80 Afghan Students, Predominantly Girls, Survive Poisoning Attempt at School


TORKHAM: More than 80 Afghan students and teachers most of them girls were apparently poisoned over the past two days, in the Sancharak district of Sar-e Pol province in Afghanistan.

In a deeply alarming incident, around 80 students at a girls’ school in Afghanistan have become unwell following exposure to a toxic substance. The distressing occurrence unfolded in the Sancharak district of Sar-e Pol province, situated in the northern region of the country. According to media sources, the students’ health failed to show signs of improvement, necessitating their urgent transfer to a nearby medical facility for immediate care and treatment.
Authorities did not provide details on the suspected motive behind the incidents, adding that an investigation is underway. Mixed classes are not unusual in rural Afghanistan until the end of elementary school, and they have continued under the Taliban-run government, which has banned women from universities and closed schools to girls starting in seventh grade.
In Afghanistan, the education of girls has emerged as an intensely contentious matter in the past 20 months following the Taliban’s assumption of power. Despite assertions by the Taliban-led government that their restrictions are temporary, no specific timeline has been provided for the resumption of schooling and higher education. This lack of clarity has deepened the divide surrounding girls’ education in the country, leaving the future of their access to education uncertain.