The Washington Post

Newlyweds decapitated by bride’s family in latest ‘honor killing’ in Pakistan

This time, both the husband and the wife were killed.

In May, there was worldwide outrage over the public stoning of a woman after she married a man against her family's wishes. The incident occurred in broad daylight in one of Pakistan's busiest cities, Lahore.

The latest "honor killing" took place in a village in the Punjab province. Muafia Bibi, 17, and her 30-year-old husband, Sajjad Ahmed, were allegedly killed with a butcher knife for marrying without the consent of their families. Five suspects have been arrested: Bibi's parents, grandfather and two uncles.

Meanwhile, in the same region, 20-year-old Sidra Shaukat was burned alive by a man whose proposal was rejected by her family. She died overnight, and 26-year-old Fayaz Aslam was arrested.

About 1,000 "honor killings" were reported in Pakistan in 2013, though the numbers are estimated to be much higher in reality. Not only do the crimes often go unreported, they also often go unpunished — according to Pakistani law, if the family of the victim forgives a suspect of a crime, that person can walk free. Because honor killings are usually committed by family members, this result isn't unusual.


Farzana Parveen was stoned to death by her family outside a court in Pakistan in late May, stirring international outrage. (Mohammad Tahir/Reuters)

Although rates of honor killings are especially high in Pakistan, where the majority of the population is Muslim, such deaths are also common in other countries, including Hindu-majority India.

In the Indian state of Haryana, a young couple was killed last year allegedly because they were planning to have a love marriage. While 20-year-old Nidhi Barak was beaten to death by her own family, police said, 23-year-old Dharmender Barak's hands and legs were chopped off and his head severed, according to a BBC report.

 

Swati Sharma is a digital editor for World and National Security and previously worked at the Boston Globe.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Get Zika news by email

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Comments
Show Comments

Sign up for email updates from the "Confronting the Caliphate" series.

You have signed up for the "Confronting the Caliphate" series.

Thank you for signing up
You'll receive e-mail when new stories are published in this series.
Most Read

world

worldviews

Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Close video player
Now Playing

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.