The first unit of women cadets has graduated from Afghanistan’s army training centre in Kabul.
The class of 29 officers makes up some 1,500 new recruits.
Women have served before during Communist rule, but were largely confined to their homes after the Taliban rose to power.
But with Afghanistan and NATO keen to expand and train up the country’s security forces, extra help is much appreciated.
“I am fully committed to serving my country, and decided to join as my brother is currently serving in the army,” said new officer Mari Sharifi.
The class will spend most of its time primarily doing administrative work rather than being engaged in field work on the battle lines.