Honour killing story

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Semanur S.
born: 1982
Assassinated: June 4, 2012
Residence: Berlin-Kreuzberg
Origin: Turkey / Kurds
Children: 2 girls, 4 boys (1-13 years)
Perpetrator: her husband Orhan S. (32 years)
Orhan comes to Berlin from Anatolia and has a woman from his native country transferred there. Semanur also comes to Germany (probably at the age of 16). Moments later Orhan starts a relationship with her friend Leyla. In total he has 6 children with his wife, and 2 children with his second wife, who lives in the same house. Reportedly, he is also married to her according to the Islamic rite.

In the night of June 4, 2012, Semanur and husband Orhan quarreled. He drags her to the terrace. A neighbour reports that she has seen abuse and mistreatment.

Orhan hits his wife on the floor and takes two knives from the kitchen. Under religious cries ("Allahu akbar"), he cuts off her head and throws it in the courtyard of the apartment building. The children watch the crime.

In the couple's apartment, the police find the body chopped into pieces. Also 6 children up to 13 years old. They are handed over to the emergency care. The perpetrator is arrested while violently resisting. He is known to the police for other offences (taxes, traffic offences, inflicting bodily harm).

According to the neighbours, Orhan is unemployed, other information says he is a contractor. Leyla says the relationship would not have existed at the time of the crime. Her children are 9 and 10 years old.

In December 2012, the perpetrator will be admitted to a closed psychiatric ward by the regional court of Berlin.

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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