Reunited

06.18.14

Afghan Couple Married, Threatened

An Afghan couple married for love and was arrested. Freed from custody, they are reunited—but not safe.

After weeks in hiding, death threats and arrest, an Afghan couple was reunited this week after they were freed from custody, The New York Times reports. Their crime? Marrying for love, outside their ethnic group. They eloped in March, but the woman’s father charged her with bigamy and her family threatened her life, claiming she was already married to her nephew. She denied the charges, insisting that the engagement was set without her knowledge and against her will. The two hid in the mountains but were eventually detained by authorities, at which time many Afghans called for their release. Last week, the Attorney General dropped the charges and released them from custody. “The Afghan government did the right thing,” said Manizha Naderi, executive director of the aid group Women for Afghan Women, whose lawyer, Shukria Khaliqi, won dismissal of the charges against the couple. “They saw the injustice in this case and decided to act.” Unfortunately, with the family’s threats at large, their safety remains in question.