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‘When Kabul Lost its Honour’: Mentally ill woman lynched in Afghan capital for ‘blasphemy’

21st Century Wire says…

The following Op-Ed was written by, Amina Zia Massoud, the niece of Afghanistan’s national hero Ahmad Shah Massoud...

Afghan men look at the site where an Afghan woman was beaten to death and her body set on fire in Kabul

When Kabul Lost its Honour

Amina Zia Massoud

Two days before Nowroz or the New Years celebration marked by Afghanistan and many other Central Asian countries, Kabul faced an unprecedented horror that left me shattered. There has only been a few times in my life that I have felt completely hopeless at the lack of humanity; March 19 2015 was one of those days.

It didn’t help that I was alone for the first time, far away from my family in another country; but my sentiments were no match to that of the woman in my hometown, a woman born and raised in this world with so much hardship and easily taken away in one moment.

No language could possibly manifest my emotions as I saw the bloodied woman being stomped upon, hit with a stick, an iron rod, stoned, run over by a car and finally burnt to death by my own countrymen, at least hundreds of them. My Facebook and Twitter feed did not give me a chance to see the beautiful planted trees or the budding fragrant roses, the pictures of smiling children and white doves flying over the scenic mountains during the first days leading to spring. Instead it was of horror, of bystanders standing by and filming the incident on their phones and even participating in the gruesome attack.

Her name was Farkhunda, she was 27 years old and had allegedly burnt the Holy Quran, a crime punishable by Afghan law. Yet, Farkhunda was mentally ill, according to her doctor and her parents, Farkhunda had been mentally ill since her teenage years.

“We tried everything, got her medication, took her to many mullah’s but with no luck”, said her mother at the 6pm nightly news, completely unaware that her child had been murdered by an angry mob on the accusation of blasphemy.  A mob of hundreds of men who shamelessly beat one woman, no consideration was given to her screaming and her wailing, the blood protruding from her flesh, the sounds of her bones cracking, her young life being taken away. In broad daylight, in the middle of Kabul, under the shadow of the Shah-do-Shamsher mosque, a house of God, one woman was beaten and tortured to death by hundreds of men proclaiming to be honouring their Creator, yet they were the most honourless men. The haunting thought of one woman being beaten to death by hundreds of men replays in my mind…

Continue reading the full story on Khaama Press

READ MORE AFGHANISTAN NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Afgan Files