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Amid Poverty And Discrimination, Afghan Women Beg For Survival

A woman and child beg on a bridge in Ghazni.

Parwana, an Afghan mother of five, begs on the streets of the southeastern Afghan city of Ghazni. She says seeking charity is her only means of survival since her husband, a policeman, was killed by the Taliban two years ago. “When my husband was killed, I sent the authorities several requests for help, but I never heard back or received any assistance,” she told Radio Free Afghanistan inside her crumbling mud house in Ghazni’s Khwaja Ali neighborhood. “My elder son, a teenager, has speech disabilities, so I can’t send him out to work. And the others are too young.” “This is why I go out to beg most days, to gather enough alms to buy food,” she added. More than 340 kilometers away in the town of Tarin Kot, Bibi Hawa, another widow, shares a similar story. She says the killing of her husband, a civilian, last year in one of the frequent firefights between Afghan security forces and Taliban militants left her ruined.


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