Muslims commit 91 percent of honor killings worldwide. A manual of Islamic law certified as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy by Al-Azhar University, the most respected authority in Sunni Islam, says that “retaliation is obligatory against anyone who kills a human being purely intentionally and without right.” However, “not subject to retaliation” is “a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring’s offspring.” (‘Umdat al-Salik o1.1-2). In other words, someone who kills his child incurs no legal penalty under Islamic law.
The Palestinian Authority gives pardons or suspended sentences for honor murders. Iraqi women have asked for tougher sentences for Islamic honor murderers, who get off lightly now. Syria in 2009 scrapped a law limiting the length of sentences for honor killings, but “the new law says a man can still benefit from extenuating circumstances in crimes of passion or honour ‘provided he serves a prison term of no less than two years in the case of killing.'” And in 2003 the Jordanian Parliament voted down on Islamic grounds a provision designed to stiffen penalties for honor killings. Al-Jazeera reported that “Islamists and conservatives said the laws violated religious traditions and would destroy families and values.”
In light of all this, until authorities get the courage to tell the truth about honor killing, there will be many more such murders.
“Afghan man kills two daughters in ‘honour killing,'” from AFP, July 22 (thanks to Lachlan):
AN AFGHAN man killed his two teenage daughters when they returned home four days after running away with a man in a southern village.
The father, who shot the girls, has been detained on murder charges in Nad Ali district in the southern province of Helmand, a hotbed of the Taliban insurgency, provincial police spokesman Farid Ahmad Farhang said.
“He killed two of his daughters. His daughters had run away with a young man four days ago. When they returned home their father killed them,” Mr Farhang said.
Police have issued an arrest warrant for the young man, who is said to be working as an interpreter with NATO forces in the southern province, Mr Farhang said.
Relations between men and women outside marriage are strictly controlled under Islam and infringements are harshly punished by most families in the troubled Central Asian nation.
So-called “honour killing” is a common practice in Afghanistan, an ultra-conservative Islamic nation which has been at war for most of the past three decades.
“Ultra-conservatives” in the U.S. don’t practice honor killing, but AFP would rather say that than “devout Muslim.” Mustn’t displease the politically correct, doncha know.