January 24, 2019

Pakistani protesters demand action after rape, murder of 7-year-old girl

12 January 2018, 03:46 | Devin Moran

Woman anchors show with daughter, protesting against rape and murder of 8-year-old

Pakistani protesters demand action after rape, murder of 7-year-old girl

A post-mortem examination conducted on Zainab Ansari suggested that she had been raped and sodomised before being strangled to death.

The forensic profiling will help determine whether the perpetrators behind Zainab's gruesome murder were the same as the ones wanted in at least 10 other similar cases reported over the past 12 months, including the sexual abuse scandal that shook the entire country.

Kiran Naz, an anchor on Samaa TV in Pakistan, brought her daughter on air to highlight the reported rape and killing of 7-year-old Zainab Ansari in Kasur, Pakistan.

"It appears as if the kidnapper is a local who developed familiarity with Zainab to take her along, probably telling her that he would take her to her parents", he said. Kasur is not the only community where children are abused, but it may be one of the first where the acts of abuse are also captured on videophones and the clips then compiled on to CDs are sold both in Pakistan as well as, allegedly, abroad.

Her body was found in a rubbish heap more than a mile from her home in Kasur, close to the border with India, on Tuesday.

"This is the failure of the government", complained one protester.

The brutal murder has sparked outrage across Pakistan, with up to 1,000 protesters lining the streets in Kasur, Lahore and Karachi.

The protests continued into Thursday, with Kasur police spokesman Muhammad Sajid saying protestors had "thrown stones on the buildings of the government hospital, police and deputy commissioner's office".

They also called out the incompetence of the police at handling child abduction cases in the region.

Up to 20 people have been arrested over Zainab's murder "but the investigators have been unable to find any clue so far" Mr Sajid said. Anees Ansari, Zainab's father, accused the police of being slow to respond when his daughter went missing.

Zainab went missing January 4, as she was heading to a class at a religious school near her home.

"Police are not cooperating with us", claimed Ghulam Rasool, an uncle of Zainab. "We do not want such an inadequate system". Three people were killed during clashes with police. The clarification stated that the chief justice had only referred to a news item that had gone viral on social media.

In a speech to thousands of mourners, he blamed the Punjab chief minister, Shahbaz Sharif, for failing to "protect lives and honour of innocent girls" in the province.

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