Qur’an 24:4 says: “And those who accuse honourable women but bring not four witnesses, scourge them (with) eighty stripes and never (afterward) accept their testimony – They indeed are evil-doers.”
Muhammad announced the “four witnesses” revelation in Sura 24 in order to exonerate Aisha of rumors of adultery, thus supplying a provision in Sharia law that has served to protect perpetrators of sex crimes. Together with the attitude taken toward women and girls as possessions, it is not difficult to see why “women and girls, especially young girls, are the most unprotected people of Afghanistan.”
Ironically, the suggested solution will undoubtedly be more Sharia, to solve problems created by Sharia.
“Afghan children raped with ‘impunity,’ U.N. official says,” by Atia Abawi for CNN, August 7:
(CNN) — The young Afghan girl sits in the center of the room, weeping. Using her hand and her blue scarf to hide her face, she recounts how she was brutally raped by five gunmen.
The girl’s tragic case is one of many in war-torn Afghanistan, activists say.
The 12-year-old girl’s family members say they’ll take their own lives unless justice is served.
“We will all commit suicide; this is not living,” cries the mother of the girl, whose gang-rape occurred in Northern Afghanistan. […]
“This is just an example among thousands of other cases,” says Shaima, a member of RAWA. “The rest go unnoticed by the media.”
Shaima is not her real name; she uses it to protect her identity. RAWA members themselves have often been targeted for raising taboo issues in a culture in which women and children are often treated as second-class citizens.
“Women and girls, especially young girls, are the most unprotected people of Afghanistan. They are raped, kidnapped and murdered,” Shaima says.
Just last week, a 3-year-old girl was kidnapped and raped by unidentified men, a government official confirms. The toddler was later released and, the official says, is recovering.
“Rapists are roaming around with impunity,” Shaima says, turning her attention to a man — said to be the son of a powerful official — who is accused of raping 22 girls in the northern province of Sar-I-Pul.
Sayed Nurallah says his 14-year-old daughter was one of the aforementioned victims. Nurallah says that coming forward with his daughter’s story makes him a target, which he firmly accepts. He says that seeking justice for his daughter is a matter of integrity.
Shaima says justice is hard to find.
“These criminals are never brought to justice, because police and government authorities are either involved or they can’t handle the crimes,” she explains. “With criminals and warlords in the political scene, we cannot expect justice to be served.”
Another factor that impedes victims from coming forward is some interpretations of Sharia, or Islamic law. Some authorities rule for a rape to be validated, victims must have four witnesses to the crime. If not, the victims can be charged with fornication or adultery. […]
Radhika Coomaraswamy, the U.N. special representative for children in armed conflict, plans to release a report in October on the state of Afghan children.
Coomaraswamy went to Afghanistan this summer to establish a monitoring and reporting system on what is deemed as grave violations committed against children.
“In many cases of violence against children, there is a sense of impunity. People continue to violate children’s rights without any sense of feeling that they will be held accountable,” Coomaraswamy said.
She found that sexual violence against young boys is also a problem. In what is known as “bacha-bazi,” or “child’s play,” boys are forced to dress in female attire, dance and perform sexual acts.