South Asia

Mutilated Afghan girl Aisha gets new nose

Asia
Image caption Aisha's new nose is a rare Afghan good news story

The Afghan girl featured on a controversial Time magazine cover in the US has been given a new prosthetic nose.

Aisha told Time her nose and ears had been cut off - with the approval of a Taliban commander - by her abusive husband as punishment for running away.

The front cover generated debate over the headline "What Happens if We Leave Afghanistan" and over the use of the photo itself.

Her surgery was done in California.

'Blood debt'

The Grossman Burn Foundation, which carried out the work, campaigns on the issue of violence against women, as well as doing free plastic surgery work.

Foundation surgeon Peter Grossman carried out the reconstruction surgery.

Aisha was widely photographed and filmed earlier this week receiving the Enduring Heart award at a benefit ceremony staged by the foundation.

She was given the award by California first lady Maria Shriver, the wife of California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Image caption The cover generated much discussion in the US

"This is the first Enduring Heart award given to a woman whose heart endures and who shows us all what it means to have love and to be the enduring heart," Ms Shriver said.

Aisha - whose surname has not been revealed - replied: "Thank you so much."

The 18-year-old was reportedly given away by her family in childhood as a "blood debt" and was subsequently married to a Taliban fighter.

His family abused her and she ran away but was recaptured and mutilated by her husband.

Aisha's case has been used in the West to illustrate the fear of what will happen if US, British and other international forces leave prematurely.

Some critics questioned the tone of the Time cover arguing that it was using emotional blackmail and gender politics to justify continued US involvement in Afghanistan.

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