Honor killing in Iran: kickboxing champion kills 17-year-old girlfriend in Mahmoudabad
killed: April 2, 2023
Residence: Mahmoudabad, Mazandaran province, Iran
Place of origin: Iran
Perpetrator: her boyfriend Ali
A horrific incident of violence against women has rocked Mahmoudabad, Mazandaran province, Iran, where 17-year-old Anita R. was brutally murdered on April 2, 2023. The perpetrator was her boyfriend Ali, a young man who was hailed as a world kickboxing champion in the village just last year.
The incident took place in Ali's father's house, where he used a broken glass to stab Anita repeatedly in the neck. Ali fled the house and stayed out of police hands for days. He was eventually caught when his getaway car was traced.
Ali has admitted to the crime and claims he acted out of love. It is believed that he killed Anita as "honor killing," a term used to describe the murder of a female relative who would have disgraced the family. In Iran, men who commit such crimes can receive significant sentence reductions under Article 301 of the Penal Code.
According to reports, neighbors heard an argument between Ali and Anita on the day of the crime, allegedly as a result of Ali's suspicion against Anita. They informed Ali's father, who discovered Anita's lifeless body when he returned home.
This tragic incident highlights the ongoing problem of violence against women in Iran, where such crimes are often not taken seriously enough by the authorities. If the court indeed classifies this as an "honor killing," Ali will likely receive no more than 3 years in prison, a sentence that does not do justice to the victim and her family. The Iranian government must take stronger action to combat such crimes and protect the rights of women in the country.
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:
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.