Honour killing story

born 1987
Murdered: July 13, 2021
Residence: Bavaria, Germany
Origin: Afghanistan
Children: 1 girl, 1 boy (9 and 13 years old at the time of the crime)
Perpetrators: her brothers Seyed and Sayed (22 and 25 years old)
Maryam came to Germany in 2013 with 2 children. About 4 years later she divorces her violent husband and gets a restraining order. Later she moves with her children to a refugee house in Berlin-Lichtenberg. On July 13, 2021, her younger brother lures her to his flat in Neukölln, which the social services found for him. There is also a brother there who has traveled from Bavaria. Maryam is mistreated until she dies of her head and neck injuries. Apparently there has been previous harassment, threats and abuse. Whether the ex-husband had anything to do with the murder is initially unclear.

Sayed and Seyed bring their sister's body in a suitcase by train from Berlin to Bavaria, where the older brother lives. There she is buried in a hole in the ground. She was found in early August. Police analyzed the brothers' cell phone records. In addition, the wife of one of the perpetrators was caught up in contradictions during her interrogation.

The brothers are arrested in Berlin. They allegedly disliked the older sister's lifestyle, which included not wearing a headscarf outside the refugee house, putting on makeup and being divorced - presumably from a forced marriage.

What is an honour killing?

An honour killing is a murder in the name of honour. If a brother murders his sister to restore family honour, it is an honour killing. According to activists, the most common reasons for honour killings are as the victim:

Questions about honour killings

  • refuses to cooperate in an arranged marriage.

  • wants to end the relationship.

  • was the victim of rape or sexual assault.

  • was accused of having a sexual relationship outside of marriage.

Human rights activists believe that 100,000 honour killings are carried out every year, most of which are not reported to the authorities and some are even deliberately covered up by the authorities themselves, for example because the perpetrators are good friends with local policemen, officials or politicians. Violence against girls and women remains a serious problem in Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Iran, Serbia and Turkey.

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