Kabul: The Activist: Stirrings of a Woman's Movement

The veils came off last Tuesday. Two hundred women had assembled outside the Kabul apartment of Soraya Parlika, Afghanistan's most prominent woman activist, and--in one motion--they all lifted their burkas. "It was a very emotional moment," says Parlika. "After years the women of Afghanistan came out in the open. Under the Taliban we all wore burkas and did not know each other. Now we all know each other's faces."

Parlika, 57, headed the Afghan Red Crescent before the mujahedin took over Kabul in 1992. She has emerged as the leader of a small but growing underground women's movement. She had initially...

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