Afghan woman who was jailed for adultery after being raped has been released from prison after President Hamid Karzai issued a pardon, her lawyer said to media yesterday.
Gulnaz was released on Tuesday night two years after she was jailed for a so-called "moral crime" when a relative raped her at her home, and almost two weeks after Mr Karzai ordered her to be freed.
Afghan jaile forced adultery after a relative raped her, then pardoned following an international outcry over the case, has been released nearly two weeks after a judicial panel said she could go free, her lawyer said on Wednesday.
She was released last night, said lawyer Kimberley Motley. She's happy that she's in a safer place.
Sex outside marriage - even in cases of rape - is one of several "moral crimes" for which women are imprisoned in Afghanistan. Others include running away from an abusive husband or a forced marriage.
How Gulnaz will be able to re-assimilate into the life she once had remains a confusing question.
Her choices are stark. Women in her situation are often killed for the shame their ordeal has brought the community. She could still be at risk, some say, from her attacker's family.
Half of Afghanistan's women prisoners are inmates for "zina" or moral crimes.
Many Afghan women's rights activists say there must be an end to the culture of impunity and police must punish all those behind violence against women.
Ms Motley said that Gulnaz is now staying in an undisclosed location in Kabul with her child after being released overnight on Tuesday "for her own safety away from the blaze of publicity".
She is now free to lead a normal life without the threat of further legal action, she said.
I hope this historic case will set a legal precedent for other persecuted women in Afghanistan.
A rape victim jailed for 'adultery by force' has today been released into the care of a women's shelter after the President of Afghanistan personally pardoned her two weeks ago.