Pakistan: Woman, daughter injured in acid attack

Lahore: A woman and her daughter were today injured in an acid attack in Pakistan's Punjab province, the latest in a series of incidents targeting women in the country. Momina and her daughter Amina were inside their residence in Satellite Town area of Sadiqabad in Rahim Yar Khan district when five men hurled bags filled with acid into the house.

The women's faces and hands were burnt in the attack. Later, they were admitted to an area hospital. Both the victims were out of danger, Dawn news reported. The women suspect Amina's ex-husband, Ahmed, of being involved in the attack. He was later arrested, according to the report. The horrific crime, which disfigures and often blinds, has long been used to settle personal enmities in Pakistan. Such attacks also show a wider pattern of erosion of women's rights in the country. The first recorded acid attack in Balochistan province came in 2010, and more reported in 2012.

Two days ago, six women were injured in a similar attack in Balochistan. Police said the attack was a result of old enmity. On July 21, four women were seriously injured when two unidentified motorcycle-borne men threw acid on them in the troubled province. The women were out shopping for Eid when two men on motorcycles came and threw the acid on their faces and sped away. A day later, two other women were targeted in a similar attack in Balochistan.

The back-to-back incidents raised fears that these attacks could be the work of religious extremists. Religious extremists in Pakistan have in the past targeted women with acid attacks and gunfire for stepping out of their houses and not covering their faces.

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