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'Honor Killing' Cases


Zahra al-Azzo
September 2007

Fayez turned himself in to the police. Zahra died the following morning in hospital. Zahra's relatives held celebrations in their village after receiving word that she had been killed and their honour restored.

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Saroj (India)
August 16, 2007

Saroj (27), who had eloped with her lover seven years ago, was killed on Thursday, a day after she returned home in Barota village of Sonepat district. Saroj's brother and cousin allegedly threw her in the Jawahar Lal Nehru canal.

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Babli (F) and Manoj (M) (India)
June 15, 2007.

This is the story of Manoj and Babli, but could well be the story of the many couples in Haryana who have lost their lives for the sake of 'honour' - family honour or community honour. In this case it is Jat honour, at Karoda village in Kaithal district.The duo who were in their early twenties eloped on April 6 as village elders would not allow them to marry because both belonged to the Banwala gotra. Marrying a person of the same gotra is taboo in most parts of Haryana.

On the run, they were forcibly taken out of a bus near village Rampur-Rodan by certain relatives of Babli, and on June 23 their bodies were recovered by Kheri Chowki police from Barwala Link Canal. After postmortem, the bodies were cremated as unclaimed.

Samina (Pakistan)
September 2007

Samina, mother of two, was shot dead by her brother in law, after relocating to her father's house to escape marital differences with her drug-addicted husband, Mithal Korkani. Her two sons were kidnapped, and Samina's mother, Nazan, and two other relatives, Imam Bakhsh and Wahid Bakhsh, were injured during the incident.

Her brother in law alleged that Samina had had sexual relations with one of his relatives.

Reported in The Dawn

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En'am Jaber Deifallah (Gaza Strip)
August 2007

En'am Jaber Deifallah was beaten to death in the head with a sharp object by her brother, her family reported. She was murdered in the name of 'honour' though no specific reason was given. Deifallah is the 11th victim of such crimes in the Gaza strip this year. The last victim was Nisreen Mohammad Abu Bureik (26) from El-Bureij refugee camp, who was killed by her brother on 28 July 2007.

Reported by the Palestinian Center for Human Rights.

Two Unnamed Women (Turkey)
August 9, 2007

A woman (47) deserted her husband in Kars, in eastern Turkey, and moved in with her divorced daughter (27), mother of three sons. They were located by the husband/father and his son who came to the women's home in Kocaeli, where the 19 year old son brutally killed his mother and his sister by beating them on the head with a bat, with his three young nephews watching.

Upon his arrest the 19 year old said that he had killed the women to clean the honour of his family.

Reported in Hurriet, Turkey.

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Baljit Kaur (F) and Ashwini Kumar (M) (India)
July 14, 2007:

After Haryana, Punjab was today rocked by a couple's elimination by the girl's relatives in spite of police protection by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Baljit Kaur, a Jat Sikh girl from Rauli village and her husband Ashwini Kumar, alias Sonu, had to pay with their lives for getting married against the wishes of the girl's parents. Baljit's relatives allegedly abducted the couple, killed them and then threw their bodies into the Beas.

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Sumaira Bibi and her daughter Sama (Pakistan)
July 2007

Sumaira Bibi, 35, was a widow, formerly married to Ashraf and had four children by him. Ashraf was murdered almost six years ago. After his death, Sumaira and her children relocated to the house of her parents, and she started working in a local garments factory to support her family. She allegedly developed relations with Javed, a father of two, from a lesser caste, who also worked in the factory. The two decided to contract a love-marriage, and had the support of Sumaira's two brothers, sister and children. Her nephew, Zaigham Abbas, however, was enraged, by the fact that she had married a man from a lesser caste. Carrying a 30-bore pistol, he went to the newly-weds apartment, and shot Sumaira twice, in the face and the chest. She died instantly. Her 9 year old daughter, Sama, rushed forward to help her mother after hearing shots and was also shot in the chest. She died in hospital the next day.

A case was registered, but the police did not arrest Zaigham Abbas, until the report was actually filed.

Reported in the News International.

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Jamila (Pakistan)
July 2007

Jamila, aged 40, divorced her husband some years ago. She was living with her five daughters and two sons in the village of Maral. Her eldest son, Rafaqat, suspecting her of having 'illicit' relations with one of their neighbours, shot her in the head.

Reported in the Pakistan Daily Times,

Najma (Pakistan)
July 2007

Najma Ali Kaheri was strangled by her husband in Ali Murad Kaheri village, on the suspicion that she had developed 'illicit' relations with someone.

Reported in the Daily Dawn,

Naseem Khatoon (Pakistan)
July 2007

The three sisters, 16-year-old Nahed Hija, 19-year-old Suha and 22-year-old Lina, were found dead from multiple stab wounds, buried in a shallow grave in the central Gaza Strip. The police force are conducting an investigation into their deaths, but they are believed to be victims of 'honour' killings.

Reported in the Jerusalem Post,

Yasemin (Turkey)
July 2007

Yasemin refused a marriage arranged by her family and ran away with her boyfriend. When she returned to her family's home, one and a half months pregnant, her father took her to an empty piece of land and killed her with a single bullet.

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Sahar (Syria)
May 2007

Sahar was 14 years old when she was married to a man, who was suffering from an illness which was believed to have rendered him infertile. He decided to undergo treatment and a surgical intervention, during which time Sahar became pregnant. Such a miracle would seem cause for celebration, yet Sahar's relatives reacted only with suspicion. After persuading her husband that the child could not be his, and must have been conceived as the result of an extra-marital affair, Sahar was tried before the courts for "illicit relations".

Medical experts testified that in the end Sahar's husband was indeed fertile and DNA tests confirmed the child was his. The judge, however, believing that Sahar's relatives would not be convinced even with this scientific evidence, placed her under the guard of an Alip - women's shelter.

While in the shelter, Sahar received a visit from her brother-in-law, who convinced her that his family had been persuaded and truly believed her innocent. He asked her to come and live with him, offering guarantees that neither he nor anyone else would harm her. On May 24, this same brother-in-law fired three shots into her chest, killing her.

Translated from French.

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Shwbo Rauf Ali (Kurdistan)
May 2007

Shwbo Rauf Ali lived in Kurdistan while her husband was in Birmingham, UK on an exceptional leave visa. They had been married for two years, and Shwbo was just 19 years old when her in-laws began to be suspicious about her fidelity, based on the discovery of an unknown number in the memory of her mobile phone. The family summoned her husband back: not for the sake of discussion or to save the relationship, but to commit bloody murder and so cleanse family honour. On the twelfth of May, Shwbo was lured to a local beauty spot, Lake Dokan, where she was murdered in the presence of her husband, three of his brothers, his parents, his sister and her husband. She was beaten by her assailants, who broke her hands to remove her bracelets and ripped her earrings from her earlobes. Shwbo was mother to a nine month old baby girl who went missing at the same time; it is suspected that the helpless infant was drowned in the lake.

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Rasheeda, Akbar Pitafi (Pakistan)
May 2007

Two persons were shot dead by armed men over Karo-Kari in the village of Gullo Pitafi near Khanpur Mahar in the Ghotki district on Saturday. Reports said Muneer Pitafi suspected that his wife Rasheeda, 20, was having illicit relations with one Akbar Pitafi. On this, he shot both of them dead and fled.

No case was registered.

Reported in News International.

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Nejat 22 (Iran)
April 2007

Iran's Ham-Mihn newspaper reported the case of an Ahwazi woman who was buried alive by her father in April (both pictured above). Villagers had accused her of having an extra-marital affair after she divorced her husband, prompting her father to kill her for the sake of family honour. He admitted killing his 22 year old daughter Nejat, but claimed she agreed to be buried alive and even helped to dig her own grave. After Nejat's mother learnt of the killing, her husband threatened to bury her alive if she reported the murder to the authorities. Nejat's two year old daughter has since been taken to an orphanage in Ahwaz City.

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Khateeja and Waris Khan (Pakistan)
March 2007

Khateeja, after the death of her first husband, moved with her four children to live with her parents in Dera Ismail Khan. Some time later, she married Waris Khan, a move that her sons and other relatives did not support. Just three days after the couple moved to Karachi to begin their new independent lives, three men, who she alleged were her younger son Sufi Khan and two of her nephews, attacked her and Waris in their home. Waris died on the spot, while Khateeja died in hospital two days later.

Reported by the Daily Times.

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Unnamed Girl (Jordan)
January 2007

A father shot dead his 17-year-old daughter, having suspected her of having sex. The girl had run away from home many times, though the reasons were unknown. She ended up in a family protection clinic in Amman. Only weeks before her murder the doctors had tested her and vouched for her virginity. She was released into the custody of her father only after he signed a pledge not to harm her. Despite this pledge, the father still continued to doubt her chastity, and on January 23rd, shot her 4 times in the head. He surrendered to police, saying he had done it for family honour. Autopsy tests proved that she was a virgin at death.

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Unnamed woman (Morocco)
January 2007

An unnamed Moroccan woman was strangled to death by her son, who could not live with the shame of his mother living with a man to whom she was not married. According to reports, Mohammed's parents had divorced years ago. His father had remarried shortly, and conceived a son from his second marriage. His mother also entered a commited consensual relationship with a man, and begot a child with him. Yet her son would not accept the relationship, because technically it was not a marriage. He asked her repeatedly to break it off. When she refused, he decided to kill her. He plotted for two weeks and eventually came to stay with his mother. One morning, when his half sister was already at school, he strangled his mother to death with an electric cable, and fled the scene, later confessing to the crime.

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Hina Saleem
August 2006

Hina Saleem was found by police Aug. 11, 2006, wrapped in bags and buried in a shallow grave in her family's backyard in Brescia, a city in the northern Italian region of Lombardy, with a gash in her throat inflicted by a meat knife. Hina's family chose to murder her after careful deliberations over her Western-style behavior and refusal to submit to an arranged marriage. Hina Saleem lived with Giuseppe Tampini, a local carpenter, and secretly worked as a waitress in a bar. Her mother, in Pakistan at the time of the murder, acknowledged to police that her husband had killed Saleem who "did not behave like a good Muslim girl." Hina's father--a legal resident of Italy since 1989, was arrested Aug. 14, 2006. Unrepentant, he told police: "My daughter was a prostitute, living with that Italian. I killed her out of rage."

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Sazan Bajuez Abdullah (Germany)
October 2006

Sazan Bajuez Abdullah came to Germany from Kurdistan after being forced into an arranged marriage with Kazim Mahmud. She bore one child by him, but after years of an abusive relationship, and an attempt to kill her by strangulation, Sazan obtained a restraining order against Kazim and filed for divorce. On October 25, 2006, the settlement was finalized at 2:30pm. She told a friend it was "the happiest day of her life". Three hours later she was dead; stabbed 13 times by her ex-husband, doused in gasoline and lit on fire - all in broad daylight in the middle of the street.

Kazim Mahmud admitted to the murder, claiming religion and culture and honour as the reasons for his actions. He is facing a life sentence.

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Banaz Mahmoud Bakabir Agha (England)
January 2006

Banaz Mahmoud Bakabir Agha, a 20 year old woman of Kurdish origin was brutally murdered on 23 January 2006 in a so called 'honour' killing; she was murdered by her own relatives, because she wished to remarry after ending her forced marriage by divorce. Her body was found stuffed inside a suitcase buried in a garden in April. Banaz had contacted London Metropolitan Police many times to express her fear of murder, but was sent back into the arms of the family that harmed her. There is even a video recording of Banaz a few weeks before her death in which Banaz states she feared for her life after being harassed by her father.

Through the case hearing, the horrific details of her ordeal have come to light; her parents left her alone in the apartment and gave the go-ahead to a hired thug, her uncle and ex-husband to brutally murder her. She was beaten, raped, stamped on, and strangled with a wire for 4 hours before she finally died.