Afghanistan: Nine men publicly flogged by Taliban in sports stadium

Taliban fighters in Kabul in 2021 (AP)
Taliban fighters in Kabul in 2021 (AP)

Nine men have been publicly flogged in a packed sports stadium in Afghanistan, a Taliban-appointed official has said.

The lashings are the latest example of the draconian policies imposed by the Taliban since they seized power in the country in August 2021.

Haji Zaid, a spokesman for the governor’s office in southern Kandahar province, said that the lashings took place at the sports stadium in the city of Kandahar, the provincial capital.

Each man was lashed between 35 and 39 times in front of Taliban officials, religious clerics, elders, and local people, he said.

Zaid did not elaborate on the crimes the nine were accused of or provide other details.

Last month, the Taliban executed an Afghan convicted of killing another man, the first public execution since the Islamist group returned to power.

The execution was carried out with an assault rifle by the victim’s father in western Farah province as hundreds of spectators and top Taliban officials watched.

No country has officially recognized the new Afghan government under the Taliban, who previously ruled Afghanistan in the late 1990s.

At the end of last year, twelve people, including three women, were flogged in front of thousands of onlookers at a football stadium by the hardline regime.

The group were guilty of "moral crimes" including adultery, robbery and gay sex, a Taliban official claimed.

The group said all three women were freed after the floggings, in the eastern Logar province. Some of the men were jailed, said a Taliban official, although it was not revealed how many.