Saba Sahar, the Afghan actress who became one of the country’s first female film directors and producers, has been hospitalized after a gun attack in Kabul.
Per the BBC, Sahar’s husband Emal Zaki said she had been travelling to work on Tuesday when three gunmen opened fire on her car also containing two bodyguards, a child and the driver. He said she had been shot in the stomach and had undergone successful surgery, but did not confirm the seriousness of her condition.
“I reached the scene and found them all wounded,” Zaki told the UK broadcaster. “She received first aid and we transferred her to the emergency hospital and then to the police hospital.”
Motivation for the shooting is not immediately clear but Sahar has been a prominent campaigner for womens’ rights in the past and her films have explored justice and corruption. She left the country during the Civil War of the 1990s when the Taliban government was overthrown, but returned in the early 2000s to resume acting.
Her credits include her 2004 directing debut The Law, which was a local success.
Amnesty International said there had been an “extremely worrying” rise in acts on cultural figures and human rights activists in Afghanistan recently.