Honour killing story

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Sara (Jasmine)
born 1976
murdered: 27 June 2010
Residence: Bonn-Holzlar
Origin: Iraq / Kurds
Children: 1 daughter (age 6 at the time of the crime)
Perpetrator: her partner Hasan Ahmed Mohammad (age 37)
The antecedents of this murder are rather unclear: Sara was born in Iraq and married in 2002 according to Islamic law. Her husband is also from Iraq, but has British citizenship. There is a young daughter from the "marriage." It is possible that Hasan has returned to live in the UK in the meantime. Perhaps the relationship has broken down, perhaps he has been living informally with Sara in Bonn-Holzlar for years. Presumably she wants a divorce. A year after the Islamic marriage, she had also entered into a marriage of convenience with a German.

On June 27, 2010, Sara sits at night with headphones on her laptop and listens to a language learning program. Hasan strangles her from behind and (presumably) stabs her in the chest with a knife. Then he leaves for a foreign country. The 6-year-old daughter, who was asleep during the crime, finds the body the next morning. She sits next to it for six hours and only in the afternoon asks the neighbors for help.

Hasan is wanted on an international arrest warrant and is arrested two weeks later by Greek authorities when he enters from Turkey and extradited to Germany in August. He denies having been in the apartment at the time in question. Witnesses (including the daughter) contradict this. The daughter, however, recants her testimony in court. A genetic test is taken, which confirms that Hasan is the biological father of the girl.

The Bild newspaper lists Jasmin as the mother's name, the Express as Sara. Hasan is sentenced to 10 years in prison for manslaughter by the Bonn District Court in May 2011. The daughter comes to the Netherlands with relatives (or in a foster family).

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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