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Families Of Slain Afghan Female Judges Accuse Authorities Of Failing To Provide Security

Relatives of the victims arrive at the site where gunmen shot dead two Afghan female judges working for the Supreme Court in Kabul on January 17.

The families of two Afghan female Supreme Court judges assassinated in the capital, Kabul, have accused the authorities of failing to provide adequate security for the officials.

Qadria Yasini, 53, and Zakia Herawi, 34, were heading to their office when unidentified gunmen opened fire on their vehicle on January 17.

Their driver was wounded in the attack, the latest in a string of targeted killings that have swept the country.

Yasini’s brother, Mohammad Amin Yasini, said on January 18 that the family was blaming security services and the Supreme Court for "failing" to take measures to protect officials.

"Sending judges with one driver and a car is not secure while threats [against officials] has greatly increased. They should have been provided full safety," he told TOLOnews.

Similar criticism was voiced by Herawi’s brother, Haji Mustafa Herawi, who claimed the government "has absolutely failed to protect the people."

"Where is the security?" he said in an interview with the AFP news agency.

Herawi’s mother Zia Gul urged the government to "wake up” and "take care" of the Afghan people.

No one claimed responsibility for the January 17 attack, and a Taliban spokesman said the militant group wasn't responsible.

Afghan and U.S. officials have blamed the Taliban for targeted killings that have swept the country in recent months.

Many of those being targeted are civilians -- journalists, rights activists, cultural figures, moderate religious leaders, and women in public roles.

The United States condemned the assassinations of the two female judges, saying the Taliban "should understand that such actions for which it bears responsibility outrage the world and must cease if peace is to come to Afghanistan."

Shaharzad Akbar, head of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission, said the country was "losing one of its most important gains, its educated & professional cadre, in what seems to be a systematic massacre & the world seems to be just watching."

With reporting by AFP, TOLOnews, and RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan
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