Afghanistan: Six people flogged in public in Kandahar

A group of people sitting at a sports ground in Kandahar to watch public flogging of a number of accused in the province. File photo

Six people were flogged in public at Kandahar City’s stadium on Wednesday on charges of sodomy and running away with a married woman, sources confirmed.

Taliban’s supreme court confirmed that the accused were “punished.” Key Taliban officials had attended the event, said the court.

A Kandahar resident said that each of the accused was lashed 39 times.

This comes as the Taliban has so far flogged in public at least 250 people in different provinces on charges of various crimes.

Only in Kandahar, at least 22 people have been flogged in public on charges of various crimes.

The trend of public flogging by the Taliban’s morality police started last year in November when the leader of the group, Hibatullah Akhundzada, asked judges to implement Sharia law in their decisions in courts, including death penalty.

Last December, the Taliban publicly executed a man charged with murder in the western province of Farah where key figures of the group, including their deputy leader Abdul Ghani Baradar, had attended the event.

In response to the Taliban’s public punishment, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the international community was “calling for the suspension of the death penalty [by the Taliban].”

US State Department spokesman Ned Price has said the implementation of the death penalty by the Taliban indicates the group’s return to its “dark past.”

In response to international criticism on the matter, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the international community “should not interfere in Afghanistan’s internal affairs.”