Taliban hang body in Afghan town square as tough rule looms

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Disclaimer: This story contains distressing details.

Recent events in Afghanistan demonstrate that the ruling Taliban will not abandon the harsh views and tactics that have drawn past and present condemnation from around the world.

On Saturday, the Taliban hung a corpse from a crane in the main square of Herat, a city in western Afghanistan, the Associated Press and Reuters reported.

Taliban authorities said the dead man was part of a group of four suspected kidnappers who were shot dead.

Sher Ahmad Ammar, deputy governor of Herat, said the men kidnapped a local businessman and his son and intended to force them out of town when they were sighted by patrols who had set up checkpoints around the city.

An exchange of gunfire ensued in which all four were killed, while a Taliban soldier was wounded.

“Their bodies were brought to the main square and hung up in the city as a lesson for the other kidnappers,” he said.

The two victims of the kidnapping were released unharmed, he said.

Wazir Ahmad Seddiqi, who runs a pharmacy on the side of the square, told The Associated Press that four bodies were brought to the main square and three bodies were moved to other parts of the city for display at the public.

Reuters reported that no other bodies were visible, but social media posts said more had been hung in other parts of the city.

Comments from the founding member of the Taliban

Earlier this week, Mullah Nooruddin Turabi, a founder of the Taliban and chiefly responsible for its harsh interpretation of Islamic law when they last ruled Afghanistan, told AP that the hard-line movement will perform executions and amputations of hands again, but perhaps not in public. .

Turabi rejected the outrage over past Taliban executions, which sometimes took place in front of crowds in a stadium, and warned the world against meddling with the new Afghan rulers.

The Taliban quickly took control of Afghanistan amid the withdrawal of US troops from the country last month. There are lingering signs that the Taliban’s hardline views and tactics are not a thing of the past. (West Asia News Agency / Reuters)

“Everyone criticized us for the punishments in the stadium, but we never said anything about their laws and punishments,” Turabi told AP, speaking in Kabul. “No one will tell us what our laws should be. We will follow Islam and we will make our laws on the Quran.”

The United States condemned Turabi’s comments, US State Department spokesman Ned Price telling reporters that sanctions such as amputations and executions “would constitute gross and flagrant violations of human rights. man “.

A return to the past?

Since the Taliban invaded Kabul on August 15 and took control of the country, Afghans and the world have been watching to see if they will recreate their harsh rule of the late 1990s.

Workers print Taliban flags in a workshop in a Kabul market earlier this month. (Bernat Armangue / The Associated Press)

Group leaders remain rooted in a deeply conservative and uncompromising worldview, even as they embrace technological changes, such as video and cellphones.

Also on Saturday, a Taliban official said a roadside bomb hit a Taliban car in the eastern province capital of Nangarhar, injuring at least one person.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the bombing. The Islamic State group’s affiliate, headquartered in eastern Afghanistan, said it was behind similar attacks in Jalalabad last week that left 12 people dead.

Taliban spokesman Mohammad Hanif said the person injured in the attack was a municipal worker.

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