Afghan woman strangled to death ‘after giving birth to baby girl’

Gaby Leslie

An Afghan woman was killed by her husband with the help of his mother-in-law because she failed to give birth to a baby boy, it has been reported.

Wali Hazrata, was arrested on suspicion of murder after her 28-year-old daughter-in-law Storai was found strangled in the village of Mahfahlay, in Kunduz, north east Afghanistan, on Sunday.

Police said that the victim’s husband Sher Mohammad - a militia group member - is believed to have fled following the murder and is still being tracked down.

According to police, he killed her because she didn’t give birth to the son he had hoped for. The birth of a baby girl is normally seen as a burden in the country whereas a boy is a cause for celebration.

However, the baby girl was not harmed during the incident.

Khanabad’s police chief Sufi Habib told the BBC: “The mother gave birth to a third girl two months ago. The husband and mother-in-law strangled her for giving birth to a third daughter.”

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"There were signs of torture on her body”, police added.

Local groups have publicly condemned the killing and have called for immediate punishment.

Reacting to the killing in a statement, the US embassy in Kabul said: “The rights of women cannot be relegated to the margins of international affairs, as this issue is at the core of our national security and the security of people everywhere.”