A former child bride from Afghanistan had her ears cut off after her husband accused her of speaking to other men.
Zarina, 23, is in stable condition after being hospitalized because her husband allegedly tied her up and hacked off both her ears in a domestic violence assault.
“I haven’t committed any sin,” she said. “I don’t know why my husband did this to me.”
The woman married the alleged perpetrator when she was 12 years old. She told BBC that “relations with her husband were not good.”
Zarina says her husband barred her from seeing her parents and that she no longer wanted to stay married to him.
She says the attack was uncalled for and occurred after her husband suddenly woke up. Local authorities say he is now on the run.
“He is a very suspicious man and often accused me of talking to strange men when I went to visit my parents,” Zarina said.
Zarina’s attack is one in a series of notorious violent assaults and domestic abuse attacks on women in Afghanistan.
Reports say Afghani girls as young as 6 have been forced to marry men old enough to be their grandfathers. This has resulted in sexual slavery, beatings, pregnancies and childbearing deaths.
Reza Gul, 20, had her nose cut off by her husband in January 2016, reports Daily Mail.
Another girl, aged 6, was sold into marriage to a man more than 40 years her senior in exchange for a goat. Within Afghan culture, it’s acceptable to sell pre-teen daughters into marriage to settle a dispute.
It’s been estimated that each day in 2017, over 12,000 girls under 15 will become child brides — that is one underage marriage every seven seconds.
Although the Afghan government has attempted to pass new laws protecting women from domestic violence, they have been difficult to implement.
While former President Hamid Karzai was in office, he was unable — or unwilling — to sign off legislation despite it having been ratified by both houses of parliament.
President Ashraf Ghani, Karzai’s successor, has also not yet signed off on legislation from the Afghan parliament aimed at protecting women and children from violence and harassment.