Laura Clarke is an International Relations graduate living in London. She enjoys writing, talking and, thankfully, quite likes rain too.
Afghan Girl Tortured
Human Rights – Details are emerging of a 15-year-old Afghan girl who was held captive and tortured by her in-laws for refusing to work as a prostitute. The girl was imprisoned for six months in a basement, having her fingernails ripped out, her fingers broken, and facing torture with hot irons. Following a tip-off by an uncle, she was released by police and her mother-in-law and sister-in-law were arrested. Her husband is still being sought.
Unfortunately, as rights activists point out, the abuse of women remains all too common in Afghanistan. Health minister Suraya Dalil has admitted that much remains to be done in guaranteeing equal rights for Afghan women: “It is an issue that shows that we still need to work a lot with regard to education, with regard to awareness, with regard to social and economic development.”
While the girl’s case is extreme, it reflects a wider attitude toward the position that women should hold in Afghan society. The unwillingness to prosecute in cases of violence against women is another sign of this endemic mind-set; only 26% of cases reported to the Afghan human rights commission were investigated by prosecutors.
The experience of this young girl highlights an area in which the government of Afghanistan and the international community must exert more effort. The war in Afghanistan was waged, according to the numerous speeches and statements, on behalf of Afghan women, to ensure that they could enjoy the fundamental human rights laid out in the Universal Declaration. That a 15-year-old child has undergone such torment at the hands of her relatives is perhaps the greatest condemnation and contradiction of the war’s outcome.
Read more at the Guardian.