Honour killing story

Born: 1969
shot dead: 20 or 29 January 1986
Residence: Heidenheim/Ellwangen (Baden-Württemberg)
Origin: Turkey
Children: none
Perpetrator: her brother Kemal (14 years old at the time of the crime)
It is West Germany in the mid-1980s. Nobody is talking about honor killings. This is a particularly serious case, but it is difficult to reconstruct the details today.

In January 1986, 14-year-old Kemal shoots his 17-year-old sister to death on the street in Heidenheim. With the sentence "My honor is saved" he has himself arrested. The judge will later speak of an execution.

The sister had reported her father for domestic violence and had been removed from the family by youth services. She lived in a supervised institution and was training to be a hairdresser. The family is strictly religious and sends their 9 children to Koranic school.

The juvenile division of Ellwangen District Court sentenced Kemal to seven years in prison for murder during a non-public hearing. The maximum juvenile sentence would have been 10 years. The father demonstratively approved the crime in court. As far as is known, the parents are not charged with incitement to murder.

At the moment the only source of information is an old article, presumably from the FAZ (see below).

Zuhal's sisters, however, later manage (it is believed) to live a freer life.

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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