Jordan imprisons women – to protect them from honor killing

by Kal El on October 1, 2008 · View Comments

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Aren’t muslim countries just magnificent in their treatment of women!? Perhaps if they did a bit more to PREVENT honor killing of their daughters/sisters/wives/etc… they would not have to resort to such savage behavior.

Jailed Jordanian women escape ‘honour killings’

Tonight on SBS, Dateline meets the women of Jordan, who’ve been imprisoned under the guise of keeping them safe.

Video Journalist Yaara Bou Melhem meets Rita*, who has spent the past 14 years in Jordan’s Al Jweidah jail. She also meets Sophia*, who’s spent the past 15 years of her life behind bars. Both girls were ordered there by the state – to prevent their families from killing them.

IN DEPTH: Dateline

BLOG: Inside Jordan

Every year, up to 20 Jordanian women are murdered in honour killings.

In Rita’s* case, a close male relative attempted to kill her in a brutal attack. In response, the country’s 12 governors have been given the power to lock up the innocent victims, rather than go after the would-be perpetrators.

Yet the girls are clear examples of previous long-term detention and thanks to Mizan, a women’s advocacy group, they’ve finally been released.

When Bou Melhem meets them they’re in a half-way house, very soon to move into their own accommodation.

It’s the only program of its type operating in the Middle East and under it, the women will assume new identities and re-locate far from their families.

This is almost as disgusting as the Saudis, sentencing a girl who was gang-raped to prison. It’s like muslim countries are competing with each other to see who can commit the most gross violations of their citizen’s human rights!

Read on for the transcript of the show in the Australian Special Broadcasting Service.

Related posts:

  1. Honor Killing in Jordan
  2. Three men charged in honor killing in Jordan
  3. Palestinian Women Fight Back After 8th 'Honor Killing' In One Family
  4. Jordan: man kills pregnant sister to "cleanse family honor"
  5. 16 year old Jordanian kid murders sister in Honor killing
  • Undercover Jordanian

    In fairness to the government, they have to lock the women up because it is the only place they are safe.  The tribal and family system here is such that there is almost nowhere in the country these women can go and not be found.  The culture is not ready to accept the idea of people adopting a  new name, for example. Such a thing is unheard of.  The problem is that this is a stop gap measure of the worst kind.  You put them in custody and now they are safe, but this is no life, and it is not what is afforded to them under the consitution or anything else. But the government is not strong enough to stand up to the Islamists and the tribal leaders who demand that this “tradition” continue, who say that it is our “culture and religion.”  I would rather they send the girls and women and the few men in this situation to Europe or America or Australia to have new lives, at our taxpayer expense then keep them in prison while their idiot families are free to work, live, and love.  They have no lives, no families.  If they try to leave and start a new life, they can’t because everything here is about your family name and contacts. 

    It sucks.

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