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Burying girls alive draws Pakistan rebukes

Aug. 30, 2008 at 11:25 AM   |   Comments

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Aug. 30 (UPI) -- Pakistani lawmakers say they are outraged by reports of girls and women being buried alive in rural Balochistan for wanting to marry of their own will.

The issue arose as newspaper reports surfaced claiming five females, including three teenage girls, were shot and buried while alive last month as punishment for willfulness, the newspaper Dawn reported Saturday.

When one member of parliament, Balochistan Sen. Sardar Israrullah Zehri, defended the act as "our tribal custom," others pounced, saying no such customs are recognized in Pakistan.

Leader of the House Mian Raza Rabbani said: "We condemn the heinous act and assure the House that a complete report on the incident would be submitted on Monday," Dawn reported.

Sen. Bibi Yasmin Shah of the PML-Q Party condemned the reports, which intimated the live burials had been carried out with the approval of a Pakistani Peoples Party minister as well as influential local elders. Another parliamentarian, Maulana Ghafoor Haideri of the JUI-F Party, disputed there has ever been such a tradition in Baloch society because it was against Islam's teachings, the newspaper reported.

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