Not long after the Taliban stated music is forbidden in public places, the family of a talented Afghan folk singer reported he was executed by its fighters.
The singer, Mr. Fawad Andarabi, appeared to be elderly as seen in online videos, and he was fatally shot for no reason by Taliban fighters last Friday, August 27.
In the earlier video, Mr. Andarabi was seated outside, surrounded by a mountainous background, playing a bowed lute known as a ghichak, and singing songs about his beloved country.
“There is no country in the world like my homeland, a proud nation,” are some of the lyrics of one of his songs. “Our beautiful valley, our great-grandparents’ homeland.”
According to the Associated Press, in the days before he was killed, the Taliban had visited his house and even drank tea with him.
“He was innocent, a singer who only was entertaining people,” his grieving son said, adding that they shot his father in the head at the farm where they live, reportedly in the Andarabi Valley, province of Afghanistan.
The Taliban’s spokesperson, Zabihullah Mujahid, told the outlet that the insurgents would look at the incident, but he did not provide any further details about the killing, which occurred some 60 miles north of Kabul.
According to The New York Post, the event happened not long after the Taliban announced that it would retain its abhorrence for music even in this time of their new beginning.
“Music is forbidden in Islam,” Mujahid said. “We’re hoping that we can persuade people not to do such things, instead of pressuring them.”
Afghanistan’s former interior minister Masoud Andarabi tweeted: “Taliban’s brutality continues in Andarab. Today they brutally killed folkloric singer, Fawad Andarabi who simply was bringing joy to this valley and its people.”
Before the shocking killing, there had been sporadic combat between the Taliban and the Northern Alliance, an armed alliance of northern militias. Recent conflicts had also occurred in the Andarab Valley’s regions.
Mr. Andarabi’s unprecedented death had marked deeper concerns over the Taliban’s respect of human rights, which the insurgent group had been portraying on media that they were committed to being less cruel this time holding power in Afghanistan.
“There is mounting evidence that the Taliban of 2021 is the same as the intolerant, violent, repressive Taliban of 2001,” tweeted Agnes Callamard, secretary-general of Amnesty International. “Nothing has changed on that front.”