The latest: At least 36 people, including women, were publicly flogged by Taliban fighters on various charges in Badakhshan province on Thursday. Apart from this, in Uruzgan province, at least 23 others have been handed out this brutal punishment and even in Kunduz, at least six people, including two women, have been flogged on Thursday.
- A video circulating on social media shows that people had gathered to watch the flogging at the Mukhabarat stadium in Faizabad city, the capital city of Badakhshan.
- The Supreme Court of the Taliban announced that these people have been punished on charges of “illegitimate sexual relations”. Taliban gave each of these people 40 lashes.
- Among the 36 alleged convicts, there were seven women. Taliban members have invited locals and spectators to watch the punishment of these people using the loudspeakers of the mosques.
- In their speeches, local Taliban officials in Badakhshan Province claimed that they were carrying out flogging sentences in accordance with Islamic law.
- In a statement, the Taliban’s Appeals Court in Uruzgan province also announced that 23 convicts, including two women, were punished.
- Qari Aghawali Qureshi, head of Taliban intelligence and culture in Uruzgan province, said the men were arrested and found guilty on charges of theft and moral corruption. Qureshi added that each of the defendants was given 20 to 39 lashes and sentenced to 18 months to eight years in prison.
- At the same time, he said three women were expected to have flogging sentences implemented in public, but had been postponed for an undisclosed period.
- Apart from this, Taliban flogged four men and two women in public on charges of robbery and illicit relationship in Imam Sahib district of Kunduz on Thursday. The Taliban court sentenced each individual to 15-35 lashes.
- On Wednesday too, the Taliban publicly flogged 12 other people, including a woman, on various charges in the Nad Ali district of Helmand province. The Taliban on Tuesday called on the public to watch the flogging. The spectators were barred from taking videos and photos as they were ordered not to carry smartphones.
Back story: These punishments began after Taliban Supreme Leader Haibatullah Akhundzada last month ordered judges to uphold aspects of Islamic law, including implementation of Hudood (crimes against God) and Qisas (retribution in kind) punishments.
- During the previous Taliban rule in the 1990s, public floggings and executions were common in Afghanistan.
- Last week, Taliban authorities carried out what is believed to be the first public execution since they seized power in August 2021. The UN human rights office, OHCHR, described it as a “deeply disturbing” development.
Zoom out: Corporal punishment, including flogging and public executions, continues in various provinces by the Taliban, despite widespread international condemnation.
- Last week in Ghor, Kapisa, Helmand and Zabul provinces, dozens of people were charged with moral corruption, theft, running away from home, having an extramarital affair, among other crimes. They were flogged in the presence of the people.
- The Taliban has publicly lashed more than 130 people since November 14 after their leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada ordered judges in Kandahar to implement strict Sharia law including Qisas, Hudd, and public flogging.