The latest: Amnesty International in a statement has called for an immediate independent, transparent and impartial investigation into the allegations of the horrific rape of a woman and her two minor daughters in Sar-e-Pul province in Afghanistan on the night of February 28.
- Zaman Sultani, regional researcher for South Asia at Amnesty International, said, “The emerging details of the gang rape of a woman and her daughters allegedly by members of the Taliban are a horrific new low in the abysmal record of human rights violations witnessed in today’s Afghanistan.”
- The rights organisation called for the Taliban to condemn the incident and to prosecute the perpetrators and to punish them as per international human rights law and standards in fair trials and without recourse to the death penalty.
- “Since they seized power in August 2021, the Taliban have violated women’s and girls’ rights and decimated the system of protection and support for those fleeing violence; such the Ministry of Women Affairs (MoWA), Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) and the Law on the Elimination of Violence Against Women (EVAW) as also the specialized prosecution units and courts dealt with cases involving violence against women and girls,” Sultani said.
- The statement added that the fresh allegation of sexual violence perpetuated by members of the Taliban raise concerns and yet again drive home the need for swift action through fair trial in a civilian court without the recourse to capital punishment.
- It emphasised that the survivors of sexual violence must be provided with access to justice, healthcare and support services, and effective and holistic reparations that are proportional to the gravity of the harm suffered.
Back story: The alleged rape took place on the night of February 28, 2023, at Khanaqah village, Suzmeh Qala District of Sar-e-Pul province in Afghanistan.
- As per the victim’s account in a video shared in local media, the incident took place when the survivors were alone in the house and allegedly two Taliban members forced their way into the house at 11pm under the pretext of finding weapons.
- Sources claimed that two Taliban members, Tahir and Nader, entered a residential house in Suzmeh Qala district of Sar-e-Pul province and “sexually assaulted” a woman and her two 12- and 14-year-old daughters.
- Taliban spokesmen have so far not officially responded to the claims.
Zoom out: However, sources said that the Taliban arrested two relatives of the group’s governor in Sar-e-Pul on charges of sexually assaulting a woman and two girls.
- The detainees have been identified as Tahir and Nader. According to sources, the detainees are the nephews of the Taliban governor in Sar-e-Pul.
- According to information, on the night of the incident, the woman’s husband was out for work outside the city.