Kabul, May 6: The in-laws of a 15-year-old Afghan girl, who was brutally tortured, beaten and locked in a basement for five months after she refused to become a prostitute, have been sentenced to ten years in prison for abuse and human rights violations.
The plight of 15-year-old Sahar Gul caught the attention of the nation and set off a storm of international condemnation when it came to light in late December.
According to police in Baghlan, her in-laws pulled out her nails and hair, and locked her in a dark basement bathroom for about five months, with barely enough food and water to survive. They also burned Gul with cigarettes and cut out chunks of her flesh with pliers.
Police in northeastern Baghlan province rescued her after an uncle alerted the authorities.
According to Fox News, Gul’s father-in-law, mother-in-law and sister-in-law were each sentenced to 10 years in prison by a court in Kabul on Tuesday, presiding judge Sibghatullah Razi said.
Gul’s husband, a member of the Afghan army, and her brother-in-law, both of whom have been on the run since her case became public, were also found guilty.
The judge said the men would be sentenced when they are captured.
Gul’s case has prompted calls for more efforts to strengthen women’s rights and end underage marriage system in Afganistan.
The legal marriage age in Afghanistan is 16, but the United Nations agency UN Women estimates that half of all girls are forced to marry under age 15. (ANI)