125 women subjected to violence in Sar-i-Pul

MAZAR-I-SHARIF (PAN): Incidents of rape and self-immolation among women have been on the increase in northern Sar-i-Pul province, an official said on Thursday.
So far 125 cases of violence against women have been registered in the province since the start of this solar year, the women’s affairs director, Nasima Arzo, told Pajhwok Afghan News.
She said the women’s situation could not be improved in Sar-i-Pul despite the implementation of some awareness programmes by her department.
She said the incidents included suicide, forced marriages, sexual assaults, runaway from homes, beating and dowries. She expressed her grave concern over the increasing incidents of rape and self-immolation.
Arzo said a total of 40 women had tried to commit suicide, but only seven of them had been successful in their attempts. Six women were raped this year, with the latest incident taking place in the Sancharak district.
Two young men entered the house of their neighbour in the district and raped two women inside a month back. The men wanted to rape young girls in the house, but the two women protected them by asking the girls to flee.
However, Arzo complained police had arrested the husbands of the rape victims instead of the offenders.
She linked increasing incidents of violence against the gender to extreme poverty, illiteracy and the existence of illegal armed groups.
She said there were individuals who considered themselves above the law, a mindset that promoted violence against women.
She concluded if tribal elders and wise people extended their support to the provincial women’s affairs department, many women could be saved from being subjected to violence.