After the Taliban took control of Afghanistan, the Taliban has been cracking down on Afghan media.
During the Taliban times 20 years ago, Afghanistan had only a few state media under the control of the Taliban. Over the past 20 years, the Afghan media outlets have grown to hundreds with U.S. support. The New Times reported on 9/11 that” In July, 248 television networks, 438 radio stations, 1,669 print outlets, and 119 news agencies were active across Afghanistan.”,
But “everything changed overnight for the media.”
Anti-Taliban protests failed to be on the news, and the news that shocked the world when the Taliban killed a pregnant police officer was also subject to censorship.
At least 19 journalists have been detained by the Taliban for covering women’s rights protests in Kabul. Two of them were beaten with whips, clubs, and electric wires at the police station. The news caused international outrage as it became known abroad.
Afghan journalists are now at risk of having to worry about their own survival, not reporting.
“The situation of free media is very critical,” said Neda, an anchor for a local television station in Kabul, identified by her nickname to protect her identity. “No one dares to ask the Taliban about their past wrongdoings and the atrocities they have committed.”
More than a dozen Afghan journalists and media workers interviewed by The New York Times said local broadcasters, newspapers, and news websites have reported in fear, intimidation, and self-censorship.
The Taliban have yet to give specific instructions to the media, but they emphasized that Afghan news outlets should reset their reports based on Islamic law and national interests. This means that journalists who are critical of the new government may face persecution.
The situation for female journalists is even worse. The Taliban have banned female journalists from working on state-run broadcasters. Most of the reporters in the local press are in a similar situation. Reporters Without Borders (RSF) issued a statement urging female reporters should be able to return to work without oppression.
For we do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, of our trouble which came to us in Asia: that we were burdened beyond measure, above strength, so that we despaired even of life. Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead, who delivered us from so great a death, and [does deliver us; in whom we trust that He will still deliver us. (2Cor 1:8-10)
The Taliban has taken away press freedom and oppressing journalists.
All news against the Taliban regime is censored. Reporters are beaten and imprisoned, and women journalists are banned even from working at a state broadcast.
The Taliban announced to the international community that they would protect women’s rights and human rights. But it was only a mask, and in reality, they are cracking down on everything against them.
Lord, you are the Light and God of justice, judging the whole world.
The rulers of the dark world try to hide their atrocious sins against the Lord, but Nothing can be hidden before the Lord.
Please shine Yor Light to Afghanistan, in thick darkness, into the morning.
Shine your light on all darkness and reveal every hidden evil-doing of the enemy.
Although Afghanistan is burdened beyond measure, above strength, we believe that they will come to trust only God, who raises the dead through it all.
May Afghans rise up and trust in God, who will deliver them from so great a death. May those broken in spirit encounter Jesus Christ and blast the gospel of light in Afghanistan!
So the power of our King who rules over the people will be revealed, and may all enemies see the greatness of our eternal King, Jesus Christ!
Lord, You are the God of Afghans. Your alone shall be glorified in this land!