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Taliban stages first public execution since retaking Afghanistan

The Taliban put a murder suspect to death Wednesday, the fundamentalist regime’s first official public execution since retaking control of Afghanistan last year.

The man accused of a fatal stabbing in 2017 was shot and killed by the victim’s father in the western Farah province. The killing was attended by at least a dozen senior government officials, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said.

The murder case had been investigated by three courts and the capital punishment was sanctioned by the Taliban’s reclusive supreme spiritual leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhunzada, according to Mujahid.

The suspect in a fatal 2017 stabbing was publicly executed.
AFP via Getty Images

The mother of the victim, named only as Mustafa, told the BBC that she demanded that the suspect, identified as Tajmir, be executed. A notice was then posted for “all citizens” to witness the public slaying, the outlet said.

“Taliban came to me and begged me to forgive this infidel,” she reportedly said. “They insist me to forgive this man in sake of God, but I told them that this man must be executed and must be buried the same as he did to my son.”

“This could be a lesson to other people,” she continued. “If you do not execute him he will commit other crimes in the future.”

Taliban leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada is seen in an undated photograph, posted on a Taliban Twitter feed
Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada is the leader of the Taliban.

The killing came after the United Nations human rights office called on the Taliban to halt public floggings of accused robbers and adulterers, which the hardline group began administering last month after Akhunzada told judges the lashings were in line with Sharia law.

Whippings and execution by stoning were a hallmark of the Taliban’s medieval rule of Afghanistan at the turn of the 21st century before it was removed from power by a NATO-led coalition following the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

The organization quickly and forcefully retook the country last year, toppling the government propped up by the West and hastening the American troop withdrawal it negotiated in 2020.

The death penalty had remained in effect in Afghanistan during the two decades the Western-backed government ruled the country, but public executions were rare and condemned by NATO.

Taliban members attend a graduation ceremony for newly police recruits at the police academy in Kabul on March 5, 2022.
Taliban members attend a graduation ceremony for newly police recruits at the police academy in Kabul on March 5, 2022.
AFP via Getty Images

Officials had promised a kinder, gentler Taliban 2.0 with an emphasis on women’s rights, but have since banned women from most jobs and many public places while forbidding girls to attend middle and high school.

With Post wires

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