Mohammad Mussa Mahmoudi, the head of Logar’s civil society who last year released a report of sexual abuse of over 390 children and youth in Logar province, has fled the country over security threats.
Mahmoudi has left Afghanistan for a "temporary period due to security threats," his defense lawyers said on Friday.
Last November, research by Logar’s civil society alleged hundreds of sex abuse claims from male children and youth from six schools where the study was done.
Mohammad Mussa Mahmoudi, the head of Logar’s civil society, claimed that teachers, headmasters and local officials were involved in an abuse ring.
The UK's Guardian published an article that brought international attention to the civil society report, citing Mahmoudi, saying that "over 500" male children and youth had allegedly been abused.
In an interview with TOLOnews, Mahmoudi said "390" was the number of boys recorded in the civil society report.
The National Directorate of Security (NDS) detained Mahmoudi, and while in their custody he and a fellow civil society member--also detained-- released videos confessing--apparently under coercion--that they had exaggerated the abuse claims. The US embassy and other embassies and international groups spoke out against the "Soviet-style" tactics of the NDS and Mahmoudi and his colleague were released.
Reactions to the Logar sex abuse claims:
“Cases exist everywhere, but they don't have enough evidence to say that such cases have happened at schools or in the education department,” said Abbas Asey, a civil society activist in Logar.
“No one can ignore this--that such things are happening in Afghanistan. This can happen everywhere and in every region,” Asey said.
This comes as the Attorney General is still trying to complete the investigations regarding the issue in Logar.
“We have confirmed some cases--there are a few cases that exist there, but we reject such events occurring in the education department of Logar,” said Sayed Farhad Akbar, a tribal elder in Logar.
“The responsible organs need to act upon their legal responsibilities and probe the case seriously,” said Alimdad, a political activist.