Girl Gang-Raped by Order of Pakistani Tribal Jury
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GIRL GANG-RAPED BY ORDER OF PAKISTANI TRIBAL JURY
July 2, 2002
MULTAN, Pakistan July 2 A Pakistani tribal council ordered an 18-year-old
girl to be gang-raped in order to punish her family after her brother was
seen walking with a girl from a higher class tribe, police said Tuesday.
The private Human Rights Commission of Pakistan demanded that all those
involved in the rape, which took place June 22 in the village of Meerwala in
southern Punjab province, be punished.
Police said the victim's father had filed criminal charges against the four
men involved in the case. Police said they picked up eight relatives of the
suspects to pressure the perpetrators into surrendering.
"We will spare no efforts to do justice" for the victim, police official
Malik Saeed said.
According to the victim, the Mastoi tribe demanded punishment after her
11-year-old brother was seen walking unchaperoned with a Mastoi girl in a
deserted part of the village. The boy and his sister are from the lower
class Gujar tribe.
The Mastoi tribe called a meeting of the tribal council, which ordered the
girl to be raped to avenge their tribal honor. The teen-ager said she was
taken to a hut and assaulted as hundreds of Mastois stood outside laughing
Pakistan has a tradition of tribal justice in which crimes or affronts to
dignity are punished outside the framework of Pakistani law. The Human
Rights Commission of Pakistan has demanded an end to punishments by tribal
Kamla Hayyat, of the commission, said the group will send a fact-finding
mission to the victim's village to determine what happened and provide help
"The increasing incidents of terrible atrocities against women are a
terrible reflection on the state of society and the status of women within
it," commission chairman Afrasiab Khattak said in a statement.
Last month, an Islamic court overturned the conviction of a woman who was to
be stoned to death for adultery. Zufran Bibi, 28, said she was raped and
appealed her early May conviction in the conservative North West Frontier
Her case prompted demonstrations and protests by hundreds of civil and
women's-rights groups nationwide.
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