Taliban thug beats women for shopping without male ‘guardians

2020: Members of Taliban punish women for leaving home alone

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Sickening footage has shown a Taliban enforcer savagely beating two women in Afghanistan, apparently for going shopping without male “guardians”. The harrowing clip surfaced just days after three women and nine men were publicly flogged in a football stadium in a stark illustration of the way in which the religious extremist organisation has tried to turn the clock back since returning to power last year.

The two-minute film, which was actually shot in 2020, was shared by UK-based Shabnam Nasimi, Executive Director of Conservative Friends of Afghanistan on Thursday.

It shows two women on their knees while the man, dressed in a military-style jacket, repeatedly lashes them with a flexible cane.

As his indiscriminate blows rain down, some striking the women on the head, they can be heard crying out in distress.

Undeterred, he returns to attack them again while other men watch.

Ms Nasimi said: “This is the Taliban brutally lashing a woman in Takhar province for going to the shop without a male guardian.

“The women of Afghanistan are experiencing hell on earth under the Taliban regime. We mustn’t turn a blind eye.”

Hundreds gathered at the stadium last month to watch the first public flogging at such a venue since the Taliban returned to power last August.

The office of the governor of Logar province, south of the capital of Kabul, had invited “honourable scholars, mujahideen, elders, tribal leaders and local people” to the stadium in the town of Pul Alam in Logar.

The invitations for the early morning event had been extended via social media.

The victims were each given between 21 and 39 lashes, having been convicted of offences ranging from theft and adultery in a local court, explained an official in the governor’s office, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Enayatullah Shuja, the deputy governor of Logar, said afterwards: “Sharia law is the only solution for problems in Afghanistan and must be implemented.”

A ban was imposed on taking photographs or video footage, but a picture outside the stadium shared by Afghan journalist Tajuden Soroush showed large numbers inside it.

He commented: “It’s all just history repeating itself. Like 1990s Taliban began public punishment.”

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Floggings, executions and stoning were commonplace when the Taliban ruled the country between 1996 and 2001, when they were ousted after a US-led invasion following the September 11 attacks.

When the Taliban returned after the US pulled out in 2021, leaders vowed to be more moderate and allow for women’s and minority rights – but have reneged on such promises.

In another such pledge, issued today, a Taliban official said Afghan girls would be allowed to take their high school graduation exams this week – but the news failed to impress 18-year-old student Najela from Kabul, who gave only her first name for fear of reprisals.

She said: “This is ridiculous. We spent a whole year under tension and stress and haven’t read a single page of our textbooks.”

“How can we possibly take an exam after a year and a half that the Taliban have kept school doors closed?”

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