Accessibility links

Breaking News

Trial Starts For Pakistani Girl Alleging Mass Rape

PESHAWAR, Pakistan -- A teenage Pakistani girl's lawsuit against men she says abducted and raped her began today in Peshawar's High Court, RFE/RL's Radio Mashaal reports.

Uzma Ayub, 16, a ninth-grader in the Karak district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, said in court today she was kidnapped from her house a year ago by men who repeatedly raped her. She said some of them were local residents, and she named several police officers she said were also involved.

Ayub said she is six months pregnant.

She told RFE/RL outside the courtroom that it was police officers who first detained her before handing her over to other men. She said she was kept in a "dark room" for one month, and then one of her captors asked her to marry him. She refused and demanded to be released as she wanted to return home to her parents.

After she refused to marry the man, several other men, including police officers, started "raping me regularly," Ayub told RFE/RL.

She said her major objective is to bring all of her abductors and captors to court.

"I want justice and I must be given justice," Ayub said. "I appealed to the high court, the Supreme Court, the prime minister, and all Pakhtuns."

Ayub was kidnapped from her home on October 9, 2010. Her mother, Bilqees Begum, filed a court case while she was missing. Although the court ordered an inquiry, police failed to recover Ayub, who finally managed to escape on September 19.

Amir Haidar Hoti, the chief minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, has appointed a high-profile, three-member committee to investigate the incident and present its findings within one week.