“After the Taliban closed universities for women, my only hope was to get a scholarship that would allow me to study abroad,” recalls Natkai, a 20-year-old Afghan student.
Natkai’s name has been altered to protect her.
The Taliban has repressed women who resist them harshly.
Natkai claims she continued to study despite the fact that she had little prospect of ever entering university in her own country.
The Emirati billionaire businessman Sheikh Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor then awarded her a scholarship to study at the University of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The scholarships for Afghan women were announced in December 2022 after the Taliban banned women from university.