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Woman accused of adultery stoned to death in Afghanistan

Published 04/11/2015

Stoning is illegal under the Afghan constitution but incidents are not unheard of
Stoning is illegal under the Afghan constitution but incidents are not unheard of

A 22-year-old woman has been stoned to death in Afghanistan by a group of men identified as Taliban insurgents after she was accused of adultery, an official said.

The woman, identified only as Rokhshana, was thrown into a hole in the ground and stoned to death, according to Abdul Hai Khateby, spokesman for the governor of central Ghor province.

Mr Khateby said Rokhshana had been accused of running away from home and adultery.

The killing happened on October 24 in a village about 30 miles north of Firozkoh, capital of Ghor. The area is controlled by Taliban insurgents "who implement their own barbaric laws", he said.

Stoning is illegal under the Afghan constitution. Incidents are unusual but not unheard of in Afghanistan, where women are the main victims.

In video posted online apparently showing the attack, about half a dozen men stand around the narrow pit, pelting the woman with rocks while a larger group of men sit on the ground nearby and watch.

The video could not be independently verified.

While Ghor officials blamed the Taliban, the 14-year insurgent war in Afghanistan is often used as a coverall for a wide range of criminal behaviour, including revenge killings, kidnapping for ransom and extortion.

The war has entrenched traditional and religious values in many parts of Afghanistan's vast rural hinterland. Although stoning is illegal under the constitution, it is seen as a legitimate punishment under Sharia law.

"This is not the first such incident and it won't be the last," said Silai Ghafar, spokeswoman for the Solidarity Party which advocates women's rights.

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