Afghan parents hacked off religious cleric's nose and ears in revenge for alleged assault on daughter

The couple are arrested after tying up a religious cleric and subjecting him to the terrifying ordeal

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The Independent Online

Two Afghan parents have been arrested after they hacked off the nose and ears of a religious cleric as revenge for a series of alleged sexual assaults on their 14 year-old daughter.

Khadija Yaqeen, provincial head of women’s affairs, told Reuters that the father invited the cleric to his house for dinner after the teenager told her parents that she had been assaulted.

He then tied the 32 year-old cleric to a chair before carrying out the gruesome attack and flushing his amputated nose down a drain.

Speaking from the police chief’s office in the northern Baghlan province, the father Abdul Qahar said: "I cut off his ears and nose. I don't know if a cat ate his ears, but his nose went down the drain.”

According to Reuters the cleric denies he assaulted the girl, but Afghan police said they had opened a case against him.

In some rural regions of Afghanistan, religious law holds overrides constitutional law.

The girl’s mother, Sultana, was arrested on Tuesday along with her husband. Speaking from the police chief’s office in a traditional burqa, she said: “If there was a functioning rule of law, then he would be punished even more severely.”

Rights activists say there has been a spike in the number of violent attacks against women in conservative Afghanistan.

There are growing fears that the rise in violence, as well as the withdrawal of NATO-led forces, could undermine hard-won freedoms for women in Afghanistan.

Additional reporting by Reuters