Friday, March 16, 2007

Pakistan: Radical Muslims Stone & Execute 3 for Adultery

This, from a Pakistani newspaper, shows Pakistan trying to come to grips with the rising religous fundementalism emanating out of the North West Fronteir Province (NWFP):

[T]he three accused of adultery were caught and . . . taken to an open place, first stoned and then shot dead by two men wearing masks and said to be 'activists' of the militant group that calls itself the Lashkar-e-Islam.

That religious extremists and obscurantists were behind this gruesome episode is proven by the fact that reports say that the crowd assembled to watch the killing after hearing it through mosque loudspeakers. It is unfortunate that instead of spreading love, peace and tolerance -- which is Islam's real message -- these purveyors of hate rallied a crowd to watch three people being stoned and then shot dead. The gory incident is also evidence of Talibanisation in the country, which seems to be growing well beyond parts of FATA like the Waziristan region to places close to the NWFP's settled districts.

. . . If anything, what happened on Wednesday only makes the case stronger for FATA to be absorbed into mainstream Pakistan, which means that it should have its police force and courts just like the rest of the country. As for the conservatism in the area, until the rise of the Taliban in the mid-1990s and growing influence of extremists in the region since the US invasion of Afghanistan, there were no reported instances of public executions. This is something that goes to the 'credit' of the Taliban alone and unless the government acts against their sympathisers inside Pakistan the brutalisation of society will continue unhindered. This is incidentally the second incident of jirga-sanctioned stoning to death in recent weeks. The last came from a village near Donga Bonga in southern Punjab and the incident seems to have been largely forgotten with no follow-up on what happened to the perpetrators.

Read the entire article here.

Update: More detail from the Hindu News Agency:

Two men and a woman accused of adultery were stoned to death by hundreds of tribesmen and bullets pumped into their bodies on the direction of a pro-Taliban outfit in Pakistan's North West Frontier Province.

"The incident occurred in one Watan Shah's home in Meelot village in Bara and the men and woman were produced before a council of religious outfit Lashkar-e-Islami yesterday," an area official who didn't wish to be named said today.

He said some people in Bara area had complained to the outfit about the two men having an adulterous relationship with a divorcee in the area.

"We know that the Lashkar sent men to check on the house of Watan Shah and found the woman Taslilm and two tribesmen Allah Noor and Shahzad in a compromising position after which they were produced before a council and punished to death by stoning," he added.

He said hundreds of tribesmen had participated in the stoning of the three at a "huge ceremony" after which the Lashkar activists also fired bullets into their bodies.

In Pakistan's tribal areas, women are rarely allowed to venture out of home without their menfolk.

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