THAT’S the bad news. The “good” news is that the Taliban, which had promised “a moderate” implementation of sharia law when it seized power, won’t outlaw items such as television and mobile phones because these will help spread their message.
According to this Yahoo! News report, mullah Nooruddin Turabi, one of the founders of the Taliban and the chief enforcer of its harsh interpretation of Islamic law when it last ruled Afghanistan, said:
Now we know instead of reaching just hundreds, we can reach millions.
He added that if executions, beatings and amputations are again made public, then people may be allowed to video or take photos to spread the deterrent effect.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Turabi dismissed outrage over the Taliban’s executions in the past, which sometimes took place in front of crowds at a stadium, and he warned the world against interfering with Afghanistan’s new rulers.
Everyone criticised us for the punishments in the stadium, but we have never said anything about their laws and their punishments. No one will tell us what our laws should be. We will follow Islam and we will make our laws on the Quran.
Writing for Yahoo!
Since the Taliban overran Kabul on Aug. 15 and seized control of the country, Afghans and the world have been watching to see whether they will re-create their harsh rule of the late 1990s.
Turabi’s comments pointed to how the group’s leaders remain entrenched in a deeply conservative, hard-line worldview, even if they are embracing technological changes, like video and mobile phones.
Turabi, now in his early 60s, was Justice Minister and head of the so-called Ministry of Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice – effectively, the religious police – during the Taliban’s previous rule.
At that time, the world denounced the Taliban’s punishments, which took place in Kabul’s sports stadium or on the grounds of the sprawling Eid Gah mosque, often attended by hundreds of Afghan men.
Executions of convicted murderers were usually by a single shot to the head, carried out by the victim’s family, who had the option of accepting “blood money” and allowing the culprit to live.
For convicted thieves, the punishment was amputation of a hand. For those convicted of highway robbery, a hand and a foot were amputated.
Trials and convictions were rarely public and the judiciary was weighted in favor of Islamic clerics, whose knowledge of the law was limited to religious injunctions.
Turabi said that this time, judges – including women – would adjudicate cases, but the foundation of Afghanistan’s laws will be the Quran.
He said the same punishments would be revived.
Cutting off of hands is very necessary for security.
He added that the all-male Cabinet was studying whether to carry out punishments in public and will “develop a policy.”
Turabi was notorious for ripping music tapes from cars, stringing up hundreds of meters of destroyed cassettes in trees and signposts. He demanded men wear turbans in all government offices and his thugs routinely beat men whose beards had been trimmed. Sports were banned, and Turabi’s legion of enforcers drove men into mosques for prayers five times daily.
Women in the newly-created “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan” can also study at university in classrooms that are segregated by sex, but they must wear an abaya robe and niqab covering most of the face.