People in Afghanistan and around the world are outraged by a video that has gone viral of the Taliban executing a woman for adultery. The video, which lasts for just three minutes, shows a woman wearing a burka who is shot multiple times as 150 men cheer and yell out ‘mujahideen.’ The execution occurred in Charikar, in Parwan Province, which is not far from Kabul.
“After 10 years (of foreign intervention), and only a few kilometres from Kabul… how could this happen in front of all these people?” Fawzia Koofi said. Koofi is a lawmaker and advocate for girls’ education. “It is really very much a sharp turn, and a huge backward (step).”
Members of the Taliban have repeatedly denied any involvement in the execution but the group has a history of handing down strict punishment for those who have sinned. The latest execution has been deemed as “an atrocity of unspeakable cruelty” by U.S. General John Allen. Allen is the top commander for NATO in Afghanistan. The hunt for the killer shown in the video is underway and local residents have vowed retaliation for the execution.
“We will take revenge for this,” said Sayed Jalal, who owns a shop in the town where the execution took place. “Their brutality and such inhumane acts are why we hate the Taliban.”
A senior provincial police official, Col Masjidi, said that the execution took place sometime around June 23. Some members of the Taliban can be heard on the video saying that the executioner is the husband of the woman being killed. But officials from Afghanistan said that the killing was in retaliation for the murder of a local Taliban leader by the husband of the woman killed in the video.
A spokesperson for the provincial government, Roshna Khalid, said that the woman was executed for carrying out affairs with fighters in the Taliban. The name of the woman has been reported as Najiba and that she was in her 20s with no children.
Qari Abdul Rahman Ahmadi, another official, said that the woman ran away with a Taliban commander who was accused of providing information to government forces. That commander was shot in a village close-by and Najiba was transported to Qol-i-Heer for her execution. One of the Taliban fighters in attendance for the execution said that killing the woman is “God’s order and decree. If the issue was avenging deaths, we would beg for her amnesty. But in this case, God says, ‘You should finish her.’ It’s the order of God, and now it is her husband’s work to punish her.”