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Another gang rape tragedy reported in Pakistan

Pakistani paramedics and policemen move the body of a rape victim from a hospital in Multan on March 14, 2014. A Pakistani teenager died on March 14 after setting herself on fire after a court dropped charges against four men accused of raping her, police said. The incident occured in Muzaffargar district of Punjab province, where the horrific gang rape of an illiterate women in 2002 made headlines around the world. (SS MIRZA/AFP/Getty Images)

Days after the death of a Pakistani woman who self-immolated in protest of police handling of her gang rape complaint, another rape tragedy has occurred in Punjab province.

Local media reported Tuesday that a group of four men allegedly kidnapped the girl, forced her to marry once and then forced her to divorce, before making her marry a second time.

Then they allegedly gang raped her.

They “gang-raped her and subjected her to torture,” Pakistan newspaper Dawn reported. “They stripped her naked, tied her [to] a tree in the village.”

All this was reportedly retribution for the perceived offenses of her brother, who married against the wishes of family members connected to the four accused rapists.

The details were hard to decipher, as reporting of rape cases by police and news organizations in Pakistan is often sketchy and incomplete.

Pakistan Today claims the rape case has been “registered” with police.

In January, several men in south Punjab gang raped a 40-year-old widow because her brother had had “illicit relations” with a young girl, according to the Dubai newspaper Khaleej Times.

Also in January, a Punjab teen was on her way from college when she was attacked and raped. Police charged one man, but then, without offering an explanation, released him. She then self-immolated in front of the police station in protest.

A 2002 Human Rights Commission report found that on average “one woman is being raped every two hours, and one woman is gang raped every eight hours” in Pakistan.

Women who come forward face immense challenges in obtaining justice.

Terrence McCoy covers poverty, inequality and social justice. He also writes about solutions to social problems.



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Soraya Nadia McDonald · March 19, 2014

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