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"Honor killings" - yeah right

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I was searching on google for a story I heard on the radio today about a Muslim man who just returned to his home from the Haj pigrimage to Mecca. He suspected his 14 year old daughter of having intercourse while he was gone so he forced her to kneel before her brothers and then slit her throat. Autopsy showed she was still a virgin.


He must have gotten into some strong fanatic juice while in mecca.


Couldn't find that article but did find this:


Indian Newlywed Couple Brutally Murdered in Honor Killing


Four family members have been arrested for murdering a newlywed couple in Punjab, India in what police believe is a so-called "honor killing". According to India News, Harpreet Singh and his wife who was seven months pregnant, Amandeep Kaur, belonged to different castes, which the police believed angered the woman’s family.


Kaur's maternal grandfather and three uncles were arrested for the murders. Kaur's father and mother were in Australia at the time of the murder and denied their involvement in the murders, reports India News.


Meanwhile, Indian women's rights activists have called for a change in India's laws regarding the rise of honor killings in India. According to OneWorld, the activists assert that honor killings make up ten percent of the killings in the northern Indian states of Punjab and Haryana. Most of the honor killings in the northern states of India involve two people in relationships from different castes or a couple running away to get married.






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Pakistan places ban on tribal tradition of 'honor killings'


Owais Tohid

Christian Science Monitor

Jan. 21, 2005 12:00 AM


KARACHI, Pakistan - In the eyes of their families and tribes, Shahid Mustafa and Imam Khatoon committed an unpardonable, heinous crime: They eloped.


The young lovers fled from a remote village of Pakistan's southwestern Sindh province and were married in a Karachi court two years ago. Back in the village, the girl's parents felt their daughter's actions had brought dishonor upon their family. They took their anger to a tribal jirga, or gathering, where the couple were placed under a death threat known as Karo Kari.


"The armed men of the tribe are chasing us. They threatened me to send my wife back to her family, attacked our house, and shot twice at me and my wife to kill us," Mustafa said. advertisement





Ten months ago, when Mustafa was away from home, the men of his wife's family kidnapped her and their infant son. Mustafa has not seen or heard from them since.



Banning honor killings



Though it may be too late for Mustafa's wife and more than 1,200 other women in Pakistan killed last year in the name of "family honor," President Pervez Musharraf signed a bill last week making honor killing an explicit criminal act punishable by death. Rights activists say that it is a small step forward and that more must be done to change tribal and feudal attitudes that treat women like property.


"It is a landmark decision as the law protects the rights of women and eliminates such archaic rituals," said Wasi Zafar, federal minister for law and parliamentary affairs. "But the problem is securing the rights of women, and it will be solved gradually and slowly by collective efforts of the society. Such inhumane crimes occur due to the tribal system, illiteracy and poverty, and we have to solve these issues."


Under the British penal code that Pakistan's judicial system inherited, there was a clause of grave and sudden provocation that was often used in cases of honor killings to skirt convictions for premeditated murder. The acquittal ratio has been more than 80 percent in recent cases of honor killings.


Social activists and opposition politicians say the government still needs to offset the Islamic law of qisas and diyat (retribution and blood money), which allows families of the deceased to either forgive the murderer or to ask for blood money in return. Since most honor killings are committed by brothers, fathers or other kin, the perpetrators go unpunished after they are pardoned by other members of the family.


"So a son could forgive his father for murdering his mother, a mother could forgive her husband for killing their daughter, a father could forgive his brother and so on," said Saba Gul Khattak, executive director of the Sustainable Development Policy Institute and a women's rights activist.


On suspicion of being a Kari, or "blackened girl," the female is killed usually by the men of her family. Then the role of a feudal lord or a tribal chief comes in as they decide the fate of the murderer as well as the Karo, or "blackened man."


If deemed "justified," then the tribe will sanction the killing of the "blackened man." The aggrieved family men can ask for compensation for the loss of their honor in exchange for allowing him to live. And if the murder is not "justified," then the killer is fined before being set free. Often jirgas ignore the court rulings. If the couple have eloped, both are liable to be killed.


Honor killings in Pakistan can be triggered by a wide range of activities or even mere suspicions. Teenage girls and women of all ages can be issued death warrants for conversing with men, working with men in farm fields, or even speaking fondly of a man over the telephone, said Mashooq Udano, a well-known critic of the ritual. In December 2002, a 16-year-old girl was killed after she joined a dance along with relatives at a wedding reception in Larkana, a town in Sindh province. One of the young men present caught hold of her hand; she quickly snatched it away, but her male relatives noticed the exchange and later killed her.



'Un-Islamic' ritual



The Koran does not permit or sanction honor killings, and religious leaders in Pakistan have on many occasions condemned Karo Kari and other honor killing rituals as "un-Islamic" and a "murder of humanity." Honor killings have taken place in other Muslim nations like Jordan and Egypt, as well as non-Muslim countries like Ecuador and Brazil.


However, the view of women as property with limited rights of their own has become rooted in Islamic culture, some social rights activists argue.


"Women are considered the property of the males in the families irrespective of their social status, ethnic or religious group. Thus the fate of the property is in the hands of the owner, and that perception has changed women into a commodity that can be bartered, bought and sold like cattle," said Rukhunda Naz, director of Auruat Foundation, a group working for women's rights in Pakistan.


Analysts say that Musharraf moved to end the practice because it conflicts with his efforts to present Pakistan as a moderate Muslim country.


But Mustafa is still in search for his love in Pakistan. He is concerned about his wife because she was kidnapped by her family members. "I don't know whether she is dead or alive," Mustafa said. "I only know that she was declared Kari. They won't let her live." .




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