Bacha bazi

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Bacha bazi, painting by Daniil Klavdievich Stepanov (1881—1937).

Bacha bāzī (Persian: بچه بازی, lit. "boy play"; from بچه bacheh, "boy", and بازی bazi "play, game") is a form of child prostitution. Bacha bazi is a centuries-old tradition.[1] It was common in central Asia until the start of the 20th century. It is still practices in some parts of Afghanistan and Pakistan [2][3] In the 21st century, Bacha baz may still be practiced in parts of Afghanistan and Northwestern Pakistan.[4][5][6][7][8][3] There are different forms, but generally, it involves a boy dancing, wearing women's clothes. The boy also playfully caresses the men he is dancing for. Sexual acts are common. It is also common that force is used to make the boy do things he doesn't want to do. Security officials state they are unable to end such practices because many of the men involved in bacha bazi-related activities are powerful and well-armed warlords.[9][10][11] As of the 2020s, despite international concern and its illegality, the practice continues.[1][12]

Bachas should be between twelve and sixteen years old. Using younger boys is seen as a sin. Older boys, which may start growing a beard, may appear ugly. If men have sexual relationships with bachis, they are not seen as homosexuals. Commonly the father will recommend his boy to a group of male friends. The other option is that the father agrees to give his son to a male suitor. This way, the father actis like a pimp. This also protects his son if there's an argument among the group of men. Another form comes from the sourroundings: many famlilies were poor farmers, who had debt. The boy was given as a deposit to pay off some of the debt.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Bacha bazi: the scandal of Afghanistan's abused boys". The Week. 29 January 2020. Retrieved 16 April 2020.
  2. Hassan, Farzana (11 January 2018). "HASSAN: Pakistan needs to do soul-searching over sexual abuse". Toronto Sun.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Wijngaarden, Jan Willem de Lind van (October 2011). "Male adolescent concubinage in Peshawar, Northwestern Pakistan". Culture, Health & Sexuality. Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 13 (9): 1061–1072. doi:10.1080/13691058.2011.599863. JSTOR 23047511. PMID 21815728. S2CID 5058030. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  4. Qobil, Rustam (September 7, 2010). "The sexually abused dancing boys of Afghanistan". BBC News. Retrieved 9 May 2016. I'm at a wedding party in a remote village in northern Afghanistan.
  5. "Bacha bazi in Northern Afghanistan (Mazar-e-sharif) Shamali culture". Archived from the original on 2014-08-26.
  6. Mondloch, Chris (Oct 28, 2013). "Bacha Bazi: An Afghan Tragedy". Foreign Policy Magazine. Retrieved Apr 23, 2015.
  7. Brinkley, Joel (29 August 2010). "Afghanistan's dirty little secret". Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  8. Ghaith Abdul-Ahad (12 September 2009). "The dancing boys of Afghanistan". the Guardian.
  9. "Transcript". Archived from the original on 2014-12-14.
  10. Roshni Kapur, The Diplomat. "Bacha Bazi: The Tragedy of Afghanistan's Dancing Boys". The Diplomat.
  11. "Afghan boy dancers sexually abused by former warlords". Reuters. 2007-11-18. Retrieved April 30, 2015.
  12. "Afghanistan must end the practice of bacha bazi, the sexual abuse of boys". European Interest. 25 December 2019. Retrieved 16 April 2020.