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June 27
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The Afghan Taliban authorities on Sunday began enforcing an order requiring all female news anchors in the country to cover their faces while on air. The move is part of a hard line that drew condemnation from human rights activists, AP reported.

Since the order was announced on Thursday, only a few news outlets have complied with it. But on Sunday, most of the female anchors were seen with their faces covered after the Taliban's Ministry of Morals and Virtue began to enforce the decree.

The Ministry of Information and Culture had previously announced that this policy was "final and non-negotiable".

"We resisted and were against wearing a mask," said Sonia Niazi, broadcaster of TOLOnews.

A local media spokesman confirmed that his station received the order last week but was forced to comply on Sunday after being told it was not up for discussion. He spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution from the Taliban.

During the last time the Taliban were in power in Afghanistan in 1996-2001, they imposed severe restrictions on women, requiring them to wear veils and preventing them from public life and education.

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