Police in Pakistan report a young, pregnant woman was allegedly stoned to death in an “honour killing” performed by her own family. Her crime: marrying the man she loved and not the man chosen for her.
“The 25-year-old, who was three months pregnant was forced to stand on this box while 20 members of her family attacked with batons and bricks in daylight.” (Via CTV News)
According to the Press Trust of India, the incident occurred while the husband and wife were on their way to a court in Lahore. The woman's family filed a lawsuit alleging the husband kidnapped their daughter and forced her to marry. She was supposed to testify she married her husband freely the day she was murdered.
The couple had wed in April. The woman died during the attack while her husband managed to escape.
Police arrested the victim's father for murder after he confessed. According to the Daily Mirror, the victim's husband has registered a formal complaint to the Pakistani courts. However, there is no guarantee the father will face any punishment.
So, why is that? As mentioned before, this type of crime is known as an “honour killing”.
The Pakistani court sees "honour killings" as a family conflict, which makes them not a crime against the state. Therefore, the courts have little jurisdiction over these cases and instead they fall under Islamic Law in Pakistan.
An analyst for BBC explains, “This makes a complicated because if the state wants to prosecute ‘honour killings’ one part of the family is the perpetrator and the other part might say you know 'We forgive you.'" (Via BBC News)
Essentially this means the woman’s family could charge the father with the murder and then forgive him the very same day, no jail time required. The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan reports about 900 women die by “honour killings” every year.