Financial times

Taliban takeover leaves Afghan jewellers in limbo: Charities and NGOs issue global plea of support for female artisans who are still unclear as to their future. Words by Caroline Palmer.

'“It is difficult to predict how the situation is going to play out,” says Edmund Le Brun, co-founder of Ishkar, a social enterprise company that has created an online marketplace for artisans in war-torn countries, including Afghanistan.

“It is different for different crafts. Carpets are mostly woven by women in rural areas of Afghanistan. We make carpets in Faryab, which was taken by the Taliban [more than] two months ago and production hasn’t been affected. But what remains to be seen is things like jewellery, which [is] made by our female jewellers based in Kabul and there is uncertainty whether they can work and what their working conditions will be like under the Taliban.”

Ishkar has a link on its website where donations can be made to support medical care in the country. Most of the big organisations involved with supporting Afghan jewellers and other artisans are also appealing for donations to support wider humanitarian efforts in the country, as well as to help support the workers who rely on them.'

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