PAN, October 7, 2013
Violence against women rises in southeast
99 cases of violence against the gender had been registered over the past six months, compared to 73 cases in the corresponding period last year, showing 25 percent surge
By Sahel Mangal
The Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission office in the southeastern zone on Monday said incidents of violence against women had increased in Paktia, Paktika and Khost.
The office head, Prof. Noor Ahmad Shamim, told Pajhwok Afghan News so far 99 cases of violence against the gender had been registered over the past six months, compared to 73 cases in the corresponding period last year, showing 25 percent surge.
He said the incidents happened this year included beatings, runaway from homes, honour killings, suicide, suicide attempts and others.
Shamim blamed the increasing violence against women on insecurity, social norms and delay in investigation of their cases by the judiciary.
He said they had arranged several awareness workshops and gatherings and coordination meetings with government entities, but local people and some organisations remained absent.
Shamim said they had been calling for the establishment of women shelter houses in Paktia and its adjacent provinces, but some civil society groups were opposed to the idea because they believed such facilities were against cultural norms.
Paktia Women’s Affairs department acknowledges increase in incidents of violence against women in the recent past.
The department head, Nasrin Oraykhel, said they had registered five cases last year, but the number rose to eight this year. She said there were some other cases which had not been registered, but they were aware of them.
Residents and civil society activists also say there has been an upsurge in violence against women in southeastern provinces.
They suggest if the authorities concerned defended women’s rights in line with social norms and traditions, it could help resolve the issue to some degree.
A civil society activist in Khost, Dr. Fazal, said if shelter houses for women were established, females would opt to leave homes on petty issues.
He said the IHRC should focus on awareness programmes and push for punishment to those involved in crimes against women.
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