Nothing Left to Lose

Lizette Potgieter

in Land of the Unconquerable

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780520261853
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520948990 | DOI:
Nothing Left to Lose

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This chapter shows that the Shi'a Family Law formalizes many injustices to which women are persistently subjected and for which they are imprisoned. All women prisoners were moved from the notorious Pul-e-Charkhi prison to Badam Bagh. Badam Bagh means “Almond Orchard” in Dari, yet there is not an almond tree in sight. The majority of female prisoners are being held for violating social, behavioral, and religious norms. The stories of the prisoners are explained. Extensive work is ongoing to implement legislation to reform existing laws in line with the constitution, Afghanistan's international human rights obligations, and Islamic law. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recommends that prison-based activities and post-release support activities be regarded as part of a comprehensive package of measures to address the issue of social integration in holistic and sustainable ways.

Keywords: Shi'a Family Law; female prisoners; Badam Bagh; Afghanistan; international human rights; Islamic law; UNODC

Chapter.  5874 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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