KUNDUZ CITY, Jan 27, 2010: Muhammad Azam, 35, resident of Imam Sahib District shows documents blaming armed men of a former commander of sexually harassing his two female family members in northern Kunduz province. (Photo: PAN/Waheed Ollah)
The police say that they have arrested a Mullah Imam (a religious cleric who leads the prayers) in connection with the rape of two women in the Imam Sahib District of Kunduz Province.
Police chief of Imam Sahib District, Abdul Qayum Ibrahimi stated the culprit’s name as Mullah Rahmatullah and told PAN that he was an Imam in the mosque of the Baika village and had been arrested two days back as he thought to be involved in the rape of two women.
The police chief said that Mullah Rahmatullah was one of the relatives of Commander Sarbaz, an ex-commander of Junbish-e-Milli and Mohammad Azam, the husband of one of the raped women who also believes that Mullah Rahmatullah is involved in the rape case.
Mohammad Azam had told PAN three days back that a total of four armed men of Commander Sarbaz had raped his and his brother’s wife.
A resident of the Baika Village, he said that these men had knocked on their door at ten at night and after they had not opened the door, one of them jumped inside and broke the lock with the gun butt to let in the other three.
According to him, these men had beat them (he and his brother) with their gun butts, kicked and punched them, tied them up in another room and then raped their wives.
Mohammad Azam’s sister-in-law cried with her baby in her lap and claimed that one of the armed men had put the gun barrel in her mouth and a total of four men had raped her and her brother-in-law’s wife.
The family of the victim claimed that Commander Sarbaz had been appointed as an unofficial commander (referred to local people who are not officially in the government but fight against the government’s opponents in return for money and arms from the government) in Imam Sahib some time back and demanded punishment for the people involved.
Malem Juma Khan, district chief of Imam Sahib said that one of the relatives of Commander Sarbaz and three other men had raped two women but he didn’t name them.
Commander Sarbaz accepted that these women had been raped but refused that his men had been involved. He said he is ready to face the accusers in whatever organization they appeal in and defend his men.
Also Mahboobullah Saidi, spokesperson of the governor of Kunduz, said that they are trying to find the other three men. He assured that the attorney and security forces are working separately to find and arrest the accused and hand them over to the law.