Rape victim; 100 lashes—Amnesty International said that an alleged Maldives rape victim’s punishment of 100 lashes is an inhumane form of punishment.
A court in Maldives has punished a 15-year-old alleged rape victim with 100 lashes and eight months of house arrest under an extreme law, an official said on Wednesday, despite condemnation from the United Nations and Amnesty International.
Amnesty called the punishment “reprehensible.”
The government of Maldives said Wednesday it cannot do anything regarding the case against the girl after the sentence was handed down Tuesday, reported CNN. The girl confessed to engaging in fornication during a court hearing.
“She’s staying in a children’s home now so we have ordered her to remain in a children’s home,” Zaima Nasheed Aboobakur, a registrar, told the network. “We have explained to her how if she wants to receive the punishment [the lashings] right now she can … or it can be postponed until she turns 18,” she added.
Amnesty International said the girl was allegedly sexually abused by her stepfather, but the registrar said it has no information about that case. She said that incident was unrelated to the fornication charge.
The girl’s name and the stepfather’s name were not released to the media.
In a statement last month, Amnesty International Maldives Researcher Abbas Faiz said, “This is an absolute outrage, regardless of the reason for her charges. Victims of rape or other forms of sexual abuse should be given counseling and support—not charged with a crime.”
“We urge the Maldivian authorities to immediately drop all charges against the girl, ensure her safety and provide her with all necessary support,” Faiz added.
Amnesty said that flogging, or lashing, is an inhumane form of punishment.
“Flogging is a violation of the absolute prohibition on torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment. The Maldivian authorities should immediately end its use regardless of circumstances. The fact that this time a 15-year-old girl who has suffered terribly is at risk makes it all the more reprehensible,” said Faiz.
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