Members18-Year-Old Girl Executed for Refusing to Marry Cousin

Honor killing is a plague that continues to infest the Arab world, even though it’s not sanctioned by religion or state

By Edy Cohen | | Topics: Islam, Honor Killing
Honor killing remains a major problem in the Arab world, even in Israel
Young Arab women must walk a very straight line, or risk bringing "shame" on their family and being murdered by their own relatives. Photo: Kobi Gideon/FLASH90

An 18-year-old girl was executed by a firing squad for refusing to marry her cousin. It was a merciless Nazi-style execution that was not prevented by the fact that she lived with her parents and brother and under their protection in the Al-Hasaka region in northeastern Syria. Her name is Aida al-Hamoudi Al-Saeedo. Al-Hamoudi’s parents had plans, as is customary in their tribe, for her to marry a cousin. Many in the Muslim world still marry cousins, and already in childhood they are told: “When you grow up, you’ll marry your cousin.”

However, Aida had other plans, refused this marriage and ran away with another young man with whom she was in love. When her parents, family and friends eventually found her, she paid the ultimate price. She was murdered for desecrating the family’s honor.

Practically all cases of murder resulting from “desecration” of family honor relate exclusively to one gender – women. In Arab society, the woman is the honor of the family. Any behavior that does not conform to...

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