Wednesday, May 23, 2018
News Roundup

Police: Afghan militants kill female Indian author

KABUL, Afghanistan — An Indian woman whose memoir about life under Taliban rule was turned into a Bollywood movie was shot dead Thursday by suspected members of the Islamist militia, officials said.

The killing of Sushmita Banerjee was the latest in a string of attacks on prominent women in Afghanistan, adding to fears women's rights in a country where many are barely allowed outside the house will face setbacks after U.S.-led foreign forces fully withdraw in 2014.

The militants arrived before dawn at Banerjee's residence in eastern Paktika province in Afghanistan's east, a region where the Taliban are especially influential. Her husband, Jaanbaz Khan, answered the door, only to be quickly bound and blindfolded, provincial police chief Gen. Dawlat Khan Zadran told the Associated Press.

The militants dragged Banerjee outside and shot her at least 15 times, Zadran said. Officials said Banerjee was in her 40s.

Taliban spokesmen did not answer phone calls seeking comment late Thursday.

Banerjee, who was from Kolkata, India, wrote A Kabuliwala's Bengali Wife about marrying an Afghan Muslim and moving to Afghanistan. The book later became the basis for the 2003 film Escape from Taliban.

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