Honour killing story

born 1976
Strangled: August 29, 1993
Residence: Bonn
Origin: Syria
Children: a then one year old child who lived in a children's home
Perpetrator: her father Ali (probably together with two cousins). He was granted German citizenship before the murder was discovered.
In 1993, Waffa's father and two of his cousins strangled the 17-year-old because of her allegedly inappropriate lifestyle. To cover up the girl's disappearance, the father writes a letter to the youth welfare office in Bonn saying that his daughter has moved. Since she is 17 years old, the youth welfare office presumably does not find this remarkable. Since then, the girl (also referred to as Samira in some articles) is considered to have "left with an unknown destination." The murder does not become public until 2007. The main witness was her sister Nourig, who was 35 years old at the time of the trial. She had seen the body on her father's couch - the rope still around her neck. Her cousin had said the same thing could happen to her.

Fearing for her life, Nourig kept silent about what she had seen. It is only many years later that she reveals her family's secret in therapy. She goes to the police. Only 14 years later, in October 2007, the case is heard by the regional court of Bonn. During his interrogation by the police, the father (65 years old) confessed to the crime, but later retracted his confession. He remained silent in court, as did one of the cousins involved, Ramadan (39). Both perpetrators are now German citizens. The other cousin fled to Syria.

Nourig, however, will not appear in court for the time being. She is (or was) in the witness protection program and is in great danger. Since she has had no contact with her Syrian-Kurdish family for years, no one really knows what she looks like. But they have already asked her ex-husband for a recent photo. It may be that her family is also looking for her to kill her.

In November 2007, Ramadan is initially released, mainly because Nourig's testimony is still missing.

In January 2008, she is questioned via video link. She is made unrecognizable by mask and wig.

In the process, it is learned that Waffa's mother died early and that the father married a new woman from Syria who was the same age as his daughter Nourig. To keep Waffa under control, she was married off against her will during a forced stay in Turkey.

On March 31, 2008, Waffa's father was sentenced to eight years in prison for the manslaughter of his daughter. The nephew Ramadan (who is considered the driving force behind the crime and who allegedly incited the father) was acquitted.

Waffa's body has not been found so far. She is reportedly buried at a mill in Asbach near Bonn. The father is said to have worked at various construction sites in this region at the time.

In September 2010, Nourig published her story in a book, "I witness the honor killing of my sister." On the cover you can see her face and her name.

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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