PAN, February 21, 2010

Afghan girl in comma after being stabbed

The 16-year-old, identified as Shakar, was shifted to a nearby health facility

Muhammad Hassan Hakimi

CHAGHCHARAN: Police found a married girl stabbed in the neck inside a ruined house in northwestern Ghor province late Saturday evening, officials said on Sunday.

The 16-year-old, identified as Shakar, was shifted to a nearby health facility, where doctors say the girl is still in comma. Doctors at Ghor Civil Hospital said the teenager was in a critical condition after she was stabbed in the neck.

"We are treating the girl with a deep wound. But she remains in a comma," Zalmay Noorzai, a doctor at the hospital, informed Pajhwok Afghan News.

"I don't know who stabbed my cousin, who has no personal enmity with anyone since she married three years back," said Abdul Baqi, a relative of the girl.

But acting intelligence chief in Ghor, Col. Muhammad Sharif, said police had detained four suspects including her husband in connection with the stabbing attack.

Sharif believed the involvement of her husband could not be ruled out. However, he said they were investigating the incident from different angles.

Relatives say the girl migrated along with her spouse to Chaghcharan seven months ago.

Afghanistan's Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) Regional Director Jawad Rezaee condemned the assault and called for severe punishment to the perpetrators. He said violence against women had increased in the country.

Acting head of Women Affairs Department Abdul Zahir confirmed registration of 18 cases of violence against women with the department during the current year. The cases concerned forced marriages, runaways and torture, she added.

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