The Taliban instructed judges to fully implement their interpretation of Sharia law, which includes amputations, floggings, stonings, and public executions, a senior Taliban spokesperson said.
Afghan supreme leader orders full implementation of sharia law https://t.co/Dd2pCQkjA3
— The Guardian (@guardian) November 14, 2022
Zabihullah Mujahid, Taliban’s chief spokesperson, said in a tweet that Afghanistan’s Supreme Leader Haibatullah Akhundzada made the “obligatory” command after meeting with a group of judges, ordering them to “investigate the cases of thieves, kidnappers, and seditionists.”
“Those cases that have met all the Shariah conditions of limitation and retribution, you are obliged to issue the limitation and retribution, because this is the order of the Sharia… and it is obligatory to act,” Mujahid said in a Tweet on Sunday.
Farhan Haq, the United Nations Secretary-General’s deputy spokesperson, expressed his worries on CNN regarding the Taliban’s intent to re-establish Sharia law.
“Since they took over as de facto authority, we expect them to abide by their promise to uphold existing human rights commitments made in Afghanistan,” Farhan Haq said.
“They have not been living up to their commitments. We will continue to press them on this. We are opposed to death penalty in all its forms.” Haq added.
While many are worried about the Taliban’s implementation of Sharia law in Afghanistan, this is not the first time.
During their rule from 1996 to 2001, the group imposed their harsh interpretation of Sharia, which included violent punishments like stoning and flogging. The Taliban also banned most forms of music they deemed un-Islamic during this period and highly restricted women’s freedoms.
When the Taliban took over Afghanistan in August last year after US forces left the country, they initially promised to be more moderate and respect women’s rights to reassure the international community and the Afghan population.
However, they gradually suppressed human rights and even carried out executions in public, either in Kabul’s Ghazi stadium or in the Eid Gah mosque.
The group continues cracking down on women’s rights. The Taliban banned girls from attending middle and high school despite promises not to do so. They also ordered women to wear head-to-toe clothing, such as a burqa or hijab, when going out. Women could no longer work in most sectors, and the Taliban required them to be with a male guardian at all times for long-distance travel.
Last week, the Taliban’s Ministry of Virtue and Vice banned women from using gyms, parks, funfairs, and public baths. The Ministry’s spokesperson said that the Taliban ordered the ban because people ignored segregation and clothing rules, which many Afghans disputed.
The Taliban issued a notice today banning women from entering amusement parks, public baths, gyms and sports clubs. pic.twitter.com/awO4hz0Uch
— Shabnam Nasimi (@NasimiShabnam) November 12, 2022
The recent ban was condemned by Afghan activists and the UN’s special representative for women in Afghanistan, Alison Davidian. In a statement, she said, "This is yet another example of the Taliban’s continued and systematic erasure of women from public life,” she said.
“We call on the Taliban to reinstate all rights and freedoms for women and girls,” Davidian added.