Another case of cruelty in the Pakistani tribal court justice system made headlines Thursday, as village elders ordered a 17-year-old girl to be raped as a punishment for her brother’s crime.
The teen girl’s brother was accused of rape himself. Reportedly, he raped a 12-year-old girl, committing the act while the young child was cutting grass in a field in South Pakistan.
The 12-year-old’s mother reported the assault to village elders. The elders believed the rape took place. However, the elders all decided to punish the male rapist by ordering his teenage sister to be raped. As ridiculous and crazy as it sounds, it is all too true and something that happens all the time in tribal courts throughout Muslim nations like Pakistan. The tribal courts in Pakistan are known to order unusual and cruel punishments. In May, a young girl was sentenced to death by a tribal court after she reported her own rape. Leaders of the tribe said the girl had “seduced” her rapist.
A police report indicates that the 17-year-old’s mother and sisters protested the ruling, but they were threatened with violence and death by the elders of the tribe who were all bearing guns.
According to the Violence Against Women Center in Multan, the families of both girls sought their help. They report that 38 cases of rape were investigated and resolved by the center in the last four months alone.
Pakistan is the world’s third-most dangerous country for women, after Afghanistan and the Democratic Republic of Congo, based on a survey conducted by the Thomson Reuters Foundation (link.reuters.com/jet92s)
In its 2010 report, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan says almost 800 women were victims of “honor killings” — murders aimed at preserving the honor of male relatives — and 2,900 women reported raped — almost eight a day.
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