KABUL: The Taliban hung the bodies of four kidnappers from cranes after killing them during a shootout in Afghanistan’s western city of Herat on Saturday, a senior official said.
Herat province’ s deputy governor Mawlawi Shir Ahmad Muhajir said the men’s corpses were displayed in various public areas on the same day as the killings to teach a “lesson” that kidnapping will not be tolerated.
A crowd of people looked on as armed Taliban fighters gathered around the vehicle.
The display across several squares in the city is the most high-profile public punishment since the Taliban swept to power last month, and is a sign the Islamist hardliners will adopt fearsome measures similar to their previous rule from 1996 to 2001.
Muhajir said security forces were informed a businessman and his son had been abducted in the city on Saturday morning. Police shut down the roads out of the city and the Taliban stopped the men at a checkpoint, where “an exchange of fire happened”, he said.
“As a result of a few minutes of fighting, one of our Mujahideen was wounded and all four kidnappers were killed,” Muhajir said in a recorded statement sent to AFP.
Muhajir added that that before Saturday’s incident there had been other kidnappings in the city, and the Taliban rescued a boy.
One kidnapper was killed and three others were arrested, he said, although in another case the Taliban “failed and the abductors were able to make money”. “It saddened us a lot because while we are in Herat, our people are being abducted,” Muhajir said.