Photo: Taliban Supreme Court

Taliban Publicly Flogs 10 People in Three Days

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN – The Taliban authorities have publicly flogged 10 individuals on multiple charges in Khost, Ghazni, and Kapisa provinces in the last three days.

The Taliban Supreme Court announced in a newsletter on Thursday, April 25, that its local authorities in Ismail Khel district of Khost province publicly flogged five people accused of theft and “moral corruption” on Wednesday.

As stated in the Taliban newsletter, in addition to receiving 39 lashes each, they were sentenced to up to five years in prison.

Meanwhile, the Taliban Supreme Court announced on Wednesday the public flogging of three people on charges of theft in Dih Yak district of southeastern Ghazni province.

In a social media post, the Taliban court said that the accused individuals, in addition to receiving 35 lashes each, were sentenced to up to two years in prison.

In a separate newsletter released on Tuesday, the Taliban Supreme Court announced the public flogging of two individuals in the northeastern Kapisa province on charges of robbery. According to the newsletter, the sentence was carried out on Monday, and the accused individuals have been sentenced to three and one and a half years of imprisonment each.

Since returning to power in August 2021, the Taliban have made public corporal punishment a central part of its penal system. The regime has publicly flogged dozens of people, including women and LGBT+ individuals, on various charges across Afghanistan.

Additionally, the Taliban has continued to carry out public executions of individuals on various charges. The regime has publicly executed at least five people in the country over the past two years.

Many rights organizations and the UN have condemned the Taliban’s form of punishment and criticized the legitimacy of the regime’s courts, particularly when accused individuals are denied the right to legal representation and the opportunity to defend themselves.

Last year, Amnesty International urged the Taliban to immediately and unconditionally end the “criminal practice” of public flogging and all other forms of corporal punishment. The watchdog emphasized the need for putting in place a formal justice mechanism with fair trials and access to legal remedies.

“The Taliban continue to ignore widespread criticism as they flagrantly flout basic human rights principles in an alarming slide into what looks like a grim reminder of their rule of decades ago,” the watchdog said.

“These outrageous punishments are just another step in the legalization of inhuman practices by the Taliban’s cruel justice system and expose the de-facto authorities’ complete disregard for international human rights law,” it added.

However, the Taliban maintains that it implements Sharia law in Afghanistan, accusing other countries and organizations of either lacking sufficient knowledge or having issues with Islam.

The Taliban leader recently emphasized the continuation of corporal punishment, including beatings and public stonings of women. He said that although such punishments might not align with the values of Western democracies, the regime would continue to implement them in Afghanistan.

He would ensure the continuation of the method ‘until he is alive,’ the resolute cleric said.