Iraq: Increase in Honor Killings -- Assassins Hired
Monday, December 1, 2008 1:18 PM

An article published in The Guardian reports on the disturbing increase in honor killings in Iraq.  The article, written by Afif Sarhan, states that there has been a 70 percent increase in these killings.  Sarhan notes that for a relatively low fee ($100), there are people who will kill girls accused of bringing shame on a family.  One of the main obstacles to stemming the tide of honor killings is the entrenched social norms, which perpetuate inequality between men and women.  According to the article, few people have been convicted of honor killings in part because police are resistant to holding the perpetrators.  Instead, many of the people suspected of participating in the honor killings are released and leave the area where the crime was committed.

Sarhan reports that this increase in honor killings is also taking a toll on organizations that advocate for gender equality.  Many members of such organizations have received threats that make it necessary for them to seek refuge elsewhere.

To read the full article, click here.

Compiled from: Sarhan, Afif, “Hitmen Charge $100 a Victim as Basra Honour Killings Rise”, The Guardian, 30 November 2008.