Women’s rights activist assassinated in Afghanistan

Eight people have been assassinated in four days by Islamists

Motorcycle gunmen killed an Afghan women’s rights activist on Thursday, as well as one of her brother, north of Kabul, authorities said.

Her assassination adds to a series of such targeted actions against figures in Afghanistan‘s civil society.

Freshta Kohistane, 29, was “killed by an unknown gunmen on ​​a motorcycle in Kohistan district, Kapisa province”, the Interior Ministry spokesman Tariq Arian told reporters. The murder was committed around local time 17:00′.

The governor of the province, Abdul Latif Murad, clarified to the French Agency that the murder took place near the house of the young woman and that her brother was also killed. No one has claimed responsibility of the action.

Freshta Kohistane, who had supported Abdullah Abdullah in the previous presidential election, was quite popular on social networking sites and often held public rallies in Kabul, mainly promoting women’s rights.

Mr Abdullah, who is currently the government’s chief negotiator in the Afghan peace process, stated that the “courageous” Freshta Kohistane was murdered in a “terrorist attack”. “The continuation of such killings is unacceptable”, he added.

A few days before her murder, Kohistane, who left behind her husband and a child, had written on Facebook that she had asked for protection from the authorities because she was receiving death threats and she denounced the targeted killings of journalists, politicians and human rights defenders which are multiplying in Afghanistan.

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The day before yesterday, on Wednesday December 23rd, Mohammad Yusuf Rashid, executive director of the Afghan Forum for Free and Fair Elections (FEFA), a well-known NGO, was assassinated in an ambush in Kabul.

On Tuesday, five people, including three women, including two doctors in an Afghan prison, were killed in a bomb attack in Kabul.

On Monday, journalist Rahmatullah Nekzad was killed while walking to a mosque by an executioner using a silenced pistol in Ghazni. The 50-year-old associate of the Associated Press and formerly of Al Jazeera was the fourth journalist killed in two months and the seventh this year.