10-Year Old Girl With Suicide Vest Detained in Helmand

News - Afghanistan


A ten-year old girl was detained wearing a suicide vest in southern Helmand province on Sunday night, local officials said.

The small girl is known as Spozhmai and is from the Khanshin District of Helmand.

Based on initial investigations, the girl's brother was serving as a commander for the Taliban and he coerced her into carrying out a suicide attack on Afghan security forces.

"My brother, who serves as a Taliban commander, asked me to wear my dress and then the suicide jacket," Spozhmai said. "After that he left me outside, I was there for several minutes and was shivering from cold, then I shouted and the security forces picked me up."

Local law enforcement in Helmand have said they believe the girl's brother is named Zahir, but goes by Hamid Saheb.

"It seems that the brother of the girl who serves as the Taliban commander has fled the area," said Hamidullah Sediqi, the chief of the Sixth Battalion of Afghan Border Police (ABP) in Helmand.

Reportedly, Spozhmai was unable to operate the button to detonate the suicide vest. Despite such issues with reliability, the Taliban has long used preadolescent, uneducated boys to carry out suicide bombings. It is rare to find a young girl wrapped up in it though.

Spozhmai has been transferred to the provincial capital of Lashkargah.

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