(KABUL, Afghanistan) — The Taliban beheaded 17 people for attending a mixed-gender party where there was music and dancing, Afghan officials reported on Monday.
The decapitated bodies were abandoned at a roadside in southern Afghanistan, according to Mullah Sharafuddin, the governor of Kajaki district in Helmand province.
All 17 bodies were decapitated, but it was not clear if they had been shot first.
During Taliban rule, most types of music were made illegal, and anyone caught attending a mixed-gender party faced stiff punishment, including death in the most extreme cases.
NATO officials insist that the insurgency is waning, but Monday’s gruesome discovery is a reminder that even after being ousted from power more than a decade ago, the Taliban are still firmly in control in some parts of the country.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Sugam Pokharel and AJ Willingham, CNN
Ivana Kottasova, CNN