October 20, 2014

Afghan actress takes on rape to bring attention on ultimate taboo

By Sadaf Shinwari - Tue Feb 26 2013, 3:09 pm

http://www.khaama.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Farishta-Kazemi.jpgAfghan-American actress Fereshta Kazemi took the role of a rape victim in a recent film, “The Icy Sun”, in a bid to bring attention to the issue women facing in Afghanistan after being raped.

The law and society imprison the rape victim in Afgahnistan rather than going after her attacker.

Kazemi 35, in an interview with the NBC news said, “The concept of honor for the men rests on a woman’s shoulders. Her brothers and her family feel that they have been raped of their honor.”

She said, the perception of honor means that society often blames the women who are attacked.

“There is this atmosphere where women are vulnerable to having people talk about them or say negative things or say that she wanted to be raped or say, ‘Look at the way they were behaving,'” Kazemi said.

According to a survey by Thomson Reuters Foundation, these deeply ingrained attitudes exist against a hostile backdrop for Afghan women and girls: The country remains one of the most dangerous countries in which to be a woman.

Human Rights Watch following a report also said close to 90 percent of women face at least one form of physical, sexual or psychological violence in their lifetimes.

HRW also estimates that around half of the approximately 700 women and girls in prison in the country are charged with so-called moral crimes, which include running away from an abusive home or feeling a forced marriage.

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