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Seventy percent of the Afghan nation still illiterate

Kabul, Jan 21, IRNA -- About 70 percent of the Afghan nation, most of whom women, are still quite illiterate, according to an international organization's spokesperson, here on Monday.

The spokeswoman of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Chris Lou added in a press conference that the illiterate women would definitely remain poor and in many cases oppressed.

She added, "the IOM is determined to establish centers in Afghanistan aimed at training the Afghan women the expertise they need to know mostly, including how to read and write, and basics in economics, so that they could live independently if needed."

Lou said, "such centers will meanwhile teach the Afghan women certain occupational expertise and trades, paving the path for their vaster effective presence at their country's social and economic scenes, where they are currently mainly absent.

She added, "14 centers will be established for the purpose in different Afghan provinces, and the IOM will cooperate with Afghanistan's Ministry of Women's Affairs in accomplishing these tasks."

Afghanistan's Kunduz, Kandahar, Herat, Balkh, and Kabul provinces have already been selected for the establishment of the IOM workshops.

Lou said, "once the Afghan women would become literate, they would achieve higher objectives in various social and economic fields, including establishing their own work shops, running health centers, etc."

She added, "this project is a phase in a vaster project launched to reconstruct the totally destroyed Afghan socio-economic status, last year."

In the framework of the said project, 33 girls schools will be reconstructed across Afghanistan, enabling some 35,000 school age girls to get back to schools.

Since last year three million children went back to school in Afghanistan, including more than one million girls banned from education under the Taliban regime, and 1.7 million refugees, mostly from two neighboring countries of Iran and Pakistan, returned to their homeland, hoping for a better future, which is still not quite certain.

... Payvand News - 1/21/03 ... --

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