One Billion Rising: Afghan women march against violence
But a U.N. report issued late last year found that Afghan women still face frequent abuse despite an increase in the prosecution of abusers. Violence against women also remains largely under-reported because of cultural taboos, social norms and religious beliefs in the conservative Muslim society.
Examples cited in the report included a woman strangled by her husband because she gave birth to girls instead of boys and a 15-year-old girl who filed a complaint about repeated beatings by her husband and father-in-law only to be told by prosecutors to withdraw it or risk imprisonment herself.
In July, some 50 women and men also took to the streets of Kabul to protest the public killing of an Afghan woman accused of adultery. A video of her gruesome, execution-style killing showed the woman being shot multiple times in Parwan province, north of the Afghan capital, as people stood nearby, smiling and cheering.
The Afghanistan Independent Human Rights commission also recorded more than 4,000 cases of violence against women from March 21 to Oct. 21 last year, but most were not reported to police.
"Women don't have a bright future and the government isn't doing enough to protect them,'' said Faryaa Hashimi, a 20-year-old student at the march. "We are calling on the international community and Afghan government to protect the women.''
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