The Kingdom drops legal exemptions for honour crimes | Main News | Ammon News

The Kingdom drops legal exemptions for honour crimes

[8/12/2009 7:41:55 PM]

AMMAN - Reduced sentences in cases where a person claims the murder of a woman was committed in an effort to restore honour will no longer be allowed by Jordan's courts, a state official said Saturday. "A crime is a crime. There will be no such things as honour crimes or exemptions for those who commit such crimes, because all people are equal before the law," said Nabil Sharif, minister of state for media affairs and communication.

The change would be a massive departure from established judicial practices in Jordan. According to official records, some defendants who murdered relatives in the name of family honour routinely receive reduced sentences, sometimes to just a few months.

Over the past two decades, dozens of women were reportedly killed in Jordan annually in the name of defending family honour. Two such cases have been reported since Thursday in Jordan.

"When they occur, honour killings are usually committed by one family member against another, supposedly in the name of defending the honour of the family, but in the eyes of the law, these crimes are now perceived as crimes against humanity and are dealt with accordingly," Justice Minister Ayman Odeh said.

Sharif said that the government was taking a number of "legal and preventive measures" to ensure a drastic drop in the number of such crimes.

Over the past year, he said, the Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of Social Affairs and the Public Security Directorate teamed up to provide "immediate protection" to women whose relatives report their absence from homes.

"The violence against women in our Arab region is unjustifiable and has nothing to do with Islam, which provides for treating women with respect," Sharif said.

This notion is supported by Muslim clerics who insist that Islamic teachings had nothing to do with honour killings.

"Islam absolutely rejects the killing of others by individuals. There is nothing called 'honour crimes' in Islam," Abdul Rahman Ibdah, a prominent Muslim scholar, said.

He believed that most crimes committed in the name of honour turned out in court to be based on "illusions of false suspicions".

The head of the National Institute of Forensic Medicine, Momen Hadidi, said that autopsies showed most female victims of honour crimes in Jordan to be virgins.

* Source: (DPA)

  • 1 Farah 7/12/2009 3:33:36 PM

    Why hasn't this article been published in the Arabic version?

  • 2 stainless feel 8/16/2009 2:29:42 PM

    I researched it , there is no change in the law it seems ..just a talk from a minister ..nothing changed ..the discrimination stay and it's till fine to kill a human in the name of honer

  • 3 12/24/2009 12:42:41 PM


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