Afghan gunmen kill five women airport guards
The women worked as security guards at a Kandahar airport searching luggage and female passengers. They had received death threats from people opposed to women in the workforce.
Unknown gunmen killed five female Afghan guards working at an airport in southern Kandahar on Saturday, highlighting the continuing threat faced by women working outside of the home in Afghanistan.
Gunmen on a motorbike fired on a vehicle carrying the women to Kandahar International Airport, where they were responsible for searching luggage and female passengers, officials said. The driver was also killed.
Airport Director Ahmadullah Faizi said the women had received death threats from people opposed to their work.
No group claimed responsibility for the attack, but the Taliban and other insurgents battling the internationally-backed government of President Ashraf Ghani oppose women working outside of traditional roles within the home.
Over the past decade women have made gradual steps to gain rights in the conservative country. During the Taliban's 1996-2001 rule, women were prohibited from attending school or working.
Women in Afghanistan continue to face widespread discrimination, violence and abuse.