Afghan woman accused of seeking asylum after ‘iron underwear’ stunt
By Mirwais Adeel - Mon May 04 2015, 6:35 am
Amid reports that the young Afghan woman was forced into hiding after ‘iron underwear’ stunt, new posts and photos went viral on social media suggesting that the performance by Kubra Khademi was aimed at seeking asylum in one of the European countries.
Khademi dressed in a metal suit featuring exaggerated breasts and buttocks and appeared on Kabul streets late in the month of February this year to protest against the sexual harassment faced by the women through a symbolic demonstration.
She had reportedly received several death threats after she was immediately forced back into her car by an angry mob of men despite she hoped to make a walk for at least 10 minutes.
The social media was once again flooded with posts and photos of Kubra on Sunday slamming her for orchestrating the stunt to pave the way for seeking asylum outside.
A photo which purportedly shows Kubra in western dress while posing for a photo outside the country was widely shared by social media users claiming that she has used the shortest way to reach Europe by producing an irony dress to feature exaggerated breasts and buttocks and wear it just for a few minutes while walking in the streets.
However, an Afghan artist Ali Hazara based in France, ruled out rumors that Kubra has sought asylum and said she is in France during the past 40 days and has to attend numerous events as she has managed to attend only two of them so far.
Khademi said she carried out the performance as all Afghan women experience various forms of street harassment every day in their life, but it’s not just a daily experience to be forgotten a few seconds later.
It leaves long lasting scars on women’s spirit and sense of confidence which discourages and limits women’s participation in public life, according to a report by Stop Street Harassment Organization.
However, due to the predominant culture of “shame” and “honor” and high social stigma attached to issues of sexual harassment, Afghan women often do not talk about their experiences of street harassment.
The scar remains invisible and women continue to suffer, generation after generation.