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At least 943 women and girls were murdered across Pakistan last year for allegedly defaming their family's honor, according to a report by the independent Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP).

The figure includes the deaths of 93 minors and seven Christian and two Hindu women.

Most of the women killed were accused of having "illicit relations," some 200 of marrying without permission.

Most of the women were killed by their brothers or husbands.

Some victims were raped or gang-raped before being killed.

The HRCP reported 791 honor killings in 2010.

Despite the rising number of reported killings, the HRCP praised parliament for passing laws enhancing women's rights.

With AFP and dpa reporting
Vintsuk Vyachorka
Belarusian authorities have blocked another opposition figure from leaving the country.

Politician Vintsuk Vyachorka told RFE/RL that Belarusian border guards, early on March 22, asked him to get off a train heading to Prague.

According to Vyachorka, who was traveling with his daughter on what he described as a private trip, the guards did not provide an explanation for removing him from the train.

In recent weeks, at least 12 Belarusian activists, politicians, and journalists have been prevented from traveling west to European Union countries.

President Alyaksandr Lukashenka confirmed on March 21 that his government has compiled a list of political opponents who are barred from leaving Belarus.

He accused opposition activists of running a "fifth column," or of being disloyal, by supporting additional EU sanctions against his regime.

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"Watchdog" is a blog with a singular mission -- to monitor the latest developments concerning human rights, civil society, and press freedom. We'll pay particular attention to reports concerning countries in RFE/RL's broadcast region.

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