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A closed circle

Several regimes have made it difficult to sell books and impart knowledge in Kabul, but now the city is full of people who want to read.

[Afghanistan] I opened my bookstore before President Daud's Republic in the 1970s, a time when Afghanistan was flourishing. There was a general growth in the economy, and a tremendous amount of literature in all genres was printed in Kabul, the Afghan intelligentsia grew, publishers and bookstores sprang up, and the tourism industry had a record year. We imported books from Iran, with which we share the Persian language, and also Britain, to meet the demand for the seemingly endless stream of tourists.

Every day, Afghan students and intellectuals came to our shops and looked. As they not only asked for titles in our language, but also by Western literature, they expanded our horizons. As a result, we became acquainted with new books and new areas of knowledge. We expanded and opened stores in other Afghan cities, and sales went up because there were an increasing number of literacy experts in Afghanistan, both native and foreign.

This intellectual freedom ended with the communist. . .

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