She spent 2 years in prison for killing her uncle in self-defense: he had stabbed her mother and was attacking her and her brother — all for, as is common, converting to Christianity. But now that she’s been released, her extended Muslim family plans on giving her a bit of good ol’ fashioned Islamic justice.
“IRAQ: COURT RELEASES CHRISTIAN GIRL SENTENCED FOR MURDER,” from Compass Direct News, updated November 21:
Prison term reduced for abused niece who defended herself; family fears retaliation.
ISTANBUL, November 17 (Compass Direct News) — In prison at the age of 14 for having fatally stabbed her uncle in northern Iraq, Asya Ahmad Muhammad’s early release on Nov. 10 thanks to a juvenile court decision was overshadowed by fear of retaliation from her extended Muslim family. Also known as Maria, the now 16-year-old Muhammad was sentenced to five years in prison for killing her paternal uncle in self-defense on July 9, 2006 when he attacked her, her mother and little brother at their family kitchen utensil store in the outskirts of Dohuk.
The uncle had cut her mother and was fiercely beating them for converting to Christianity and for “shaming” the family by working in public when Muhammad stabbed him. Her lawyer, Akram Al-Najar, told Compass that the court earlier agreed to reduce her sentence to two years and four months on the basis of her good conduct and having served nearly three-quarters of her three-and-a-half year sentence.
But Muhammad’s release from prison now means a possible retaliation from extended family members for her uncle’s death, said Al-Najar.
Not to mention for her apostasy from Islam, which mandates the death-penalty.
“I am not sure she is safe right now, especially after her release, since there are still people intent on gaining revenge,” said the lawyer. Muhammad’s father, Ahmad Muhammad Abdurahman, said that in the last week family members have called him twice telling him his days of joy are numbered. “My sisters called me, and my brother’s wife called me also [and said], “˜You are a shame. Don’t be happy in your family; we will never let you be happy in your family,– Abdurahman told Compass.