Thursday, May 29, 2014

Stop killing in the name of honor !! Seeking Justice for Donya

Seek justice for Donya !


 May 2014

A  brutal killing of Donya,a 15 years old child  who forced marriage twice reported as an honor killing case. A few years ago when I was talking about so called” honor killing”, even activists could not understand the issue. Today so many things changed. But still I received some question thus I am going to explain a few points that might be helpful to know more about it.

"Honor killing" generally refers to acts of violence, usually murder, committed by family members or acquaintances of a woman who has allegedly brought dishonor upon her family.

A woman can be targeted by individuals within her family or her tribe, village and kinsmen for a variety of reasons, including but not limited to: refusing to enter into an  arranged marriage, being the victim of sexual assault, seeking a divorce - even from an abusive husband - or (allegedly) committing adultery. The mere perception that a woman has behaved in a way that "dishonors" her family is sufficient to trigger an attack on her life. 

Honor crimes happen more often in transitional systems, such as regions facing war, revolution, globalization or political changes. Rape is often used as a weapon of war, subjecting women to both the threat of dishonor and the brutality of sexual exploitation. Women are violated by both the authorities and their own families, especially in Islamic countries or cultures that have been dominated by Islam. In these cultures, shame takes on a more dominant role.

Women are killed for simply being in love, having an "illegitimate" relationship with someone or being suspected of having a relationship. Women's emotions and sexuality are directly linked to shame in these cultures, resulting in the need for retaliation by the dominant powers.

It is true that Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) officials are trying to understand and stop a rise in honor killings. The Kurdish government has overturned Iraqi laws that allow relatives to kill women who were perceived to have dishonored their families, but enough action has never been done.

It is crucial that the KRG legally protects women and their right to life. The Kurdish Parliament must push to implement the law which regards "honor killing" as murder, rather than an excusable case.

Women's organizations around the world must not only encourage regimes and government entities to ban this practice, but force these bodies of law to implement an end to such a horrifying act of violence.

The world must also consider the social, political, cultural and economical situations of these regions, all of which lead to a rise in these acts of violence.

I hope that the public will understand that crime in the name of "honor" or any kind of violence against women cannot remain solely an issue for the families involved; it is a concern of the entire society.

I am also urging women's and human rights organizations to stand up for those women who silently suffer at the hands of those they are supposed to trust the most.

There are so much that has to be done. today my fellow activist Arayish Barzanji Director of Public Relations and Media atRwanga Charity Organization wrote me that so many young men were involved in the event :
"Candelight Vigil for Donya at Shanadar Park. 
Everyone who participated came with a heart filled with grief for this poor girl, sending their prayers for her innocence and lighting candles to light her path...God bless Donya and all the girls before her who were killed brutally,,,may we never see this happen again."

Stop Honor Killing.Honor Killing is not our Culture. There is no honor in Killing

Sign the petition

Donya's Law

Petition published by Arayish Barzinjee on May 31, 2014
1049 Signatures 
Target: Kurdis
Region: Iraq

Petition Background (Preamble):

In Kurdistan of Iraq, amidst all the growth in the economy and infrastructure, one very important issue which has been fatally neglected in our society is that of violence against females of all ages under the justification of honor. In 2012, 89 women were killed and another 357 were severely burned or mutilated in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

Girls under the age of 18, in particular, have been subjected to extremely brutal treatment.

Too many minors have been forced into marriage to become a child bride with no means to escape their fate. Too many have been muted by family members or spouses when trying to voice their objection. Time and time again, this has ended in the murder of our girls, whether by their families or by their spouse.
It’s time to put an end to this horror.

Laws have been created to penalize and punish the criminals “after the fact”, but not enough laws to prevent such heinous crimes from occurring before it can even start.

We need a law that will prevent parents from forcing their daughters into marriage before the age of 18 and religious leaders from having the right to perform marriages of minors under 18 as well. This should be punishable by the courts for both parties.


We, the undersigned, insist, that by the end of 2014, the Kurdistan Regional Government, pass Donya’s Law making it illegal and punishable by law, any parent, sibling or extended family as well as any and all religious leaders to force and perform the unlawful and forced marriage of any minor female under 18 years of age.

The Donya's Law petition to Kurdis was written by Arayish Barzinjee and is in the category Gender Rights and Issues at GoPetition. Contact author herePetition tags: