Nine women and 14 men publicly flogged in Sar-e-Pul
Photo: Social Media

Taliban Publicly Flogs 30 Individuals, Including a Woman, in the Past Four Days

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN – The Taliban has publicly flogged 30 individuals, including a woman, on multiple charges in the provinces of Ghor, Paktika, Ghazni, Khost, and Kunduz in the last four days.

Over the last four days, the Taliban Supreme Court has issued several announcements regarding the public flogging of these individuals across the country. They face charges including ‘adultery’, ‘sodomy’, ‘running away from home’, and ‘theft’.

The Taliban Supreme Court has announced that these individuals, in addition to receiving between 20 to 40 lashes each, have also been sentenced to up to several years in prison.

After retaking power in Afghanistan in August 2021, the Taliban carried out its first public flogging in the eastern province of Logar in November 2022. Since then, the regime has continued this practice across the country, with public lashings often taking place in sports stadiums and witnessed by local authorities, elders, and residents.

Additionally, the Taliban has continued to conduct public executions for various charges. Over the past nearly three years, the regime has publicly executed at least five individuals in the country.

The Taliban’s reinstatement of public flogging has faced widespread international condemnation, with many organizations condemning it as a form of “corporal punishment.”

The United Nations has been particularly vocal in condemning this practice, describing it as a violation of fundamental human values. The UN and numerous rights organizations have also criticized the legitimacy of the Taliban’s courts, especially when accused individuals are denied the right to legal representation and the opportunity to defend themselves.

Last year, Amnesty International, an international human rights organization, called on the Taliban to immediately and unconditionally cease the “criminal practice” of public flogging and all other forms of corporal punishment. The watchdog emphasized the need to establish a formal justice system that ensures fair trials and access to legal remedies.

The Taliban, however, asserts that it enforces Sharia law in Afghanistan, accusing other countries and organizations of either lacking sufficient understanding or having biases against Islam.

The Taliban supreme leader, Hibatullah Akhundzada, recently emphasized the continuation of corporal punishment, including public beatings and stonings of women. He said that while such punishments may not align with Western democratic values, the regime will persist in implementing them in Afghanistan.

“In your view, stoning is a violation of women’s rights. In the near future, we plan to enforce the punishment for adultery, which includes publicly stoning and flogging women,” the Taliban leader said, pointing toward Western countries. “Just as you claim to strive to save and liberate humanity, so do I. You represent Satan, and I represent God. As Allah says, ‘The party of Allah will prevail,’” he added.