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Shahnaz Bibi, Pakistani Woman Forced To Parade Naked, Recalls Harrowing Ordeal

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PAKISTAN WOMEN
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A Pakistani woman who was reportedly paraded naked through a village after her son was accused of sleeping with a married neighbor is speaking out about her horrifying ordeal.

As the BBC is reporting, Shahnaz Bibi was at her home in the village of Neelor Bala, north of Islamabad, when four men, armed with pistols and rifles, burst into her room. Bibi, who is reportedly about 50 years old, says she knew them all.

She recalls:

"Before I knew what was happening they tied my wrists and pushed me hard out into the lane, abusing me and sometimes throwing me to the ground. They dragged me to an open plot of land. There, they tore off all of my clothes.

For a full hour they pushed me around and paraded me naked. I cried and pleaded with them but they wouldn't listen and they kept beating me."

Before long, she says, the entire village was watching. "Men, women and children were all there, but nobody came forward to help," she says.

As the AFP reports, the incident, which has since been condemned by human rights advocacy groups worldwide, occurred after neighbor Mohammad Salman grew suspicious that the one of Bibi's sons slept with his wife. India's Hindustan Times reported that the matter was then taken to the village jirga, which decided that Salman's wife, who had become pregnant, should immediately divorce her husband and the two men accused of rape should be punished.

"I said they should have discussed it with us, or should have gone to the police about my son if they felt he had done something wrong, but they just wanted to humiliate me," Bibi says. "The whole time I was asking myself why this curse had befallen me from nowhere. What had I done? I was begging them to stop."

The BBC also reports that local police arrested two men for the attack, and are continuing to look for other offenders. Still, Bibi says she can no longer return to her village. "I feel ashamed even to show my face to my own brothers and sisters," she says.

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