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The small shaolins in Kabul

Defying Afghanistan’s most conservative rules, a group of girls practise wushu, an ancient Chinese martial art. They train in their satin pyjamas in the open air, on the snow. However, the proper physical training is not enough, they must strengthen their minds, their thoughts and their vitality itself. “In this country’s ultra-conservative mentality all women are a nuisance”, explains Sima Azimi, the teacher, who opened her own gym in defiance of all, “we are determined to resist and to fight this mindset. No one here helps us, women must help themselves. This is why I ask the girls to show what they can do, we must stop being afraid and keeping silent”. 

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