Honour Killings

Whose Honour?

Pakistani police revealed on Saturday that a young couple had their throats slit with scythes after they married for love. A daughter of Muslim parents who marries for love is not dishonouring her family, as the label honour killing implies, but dishonoring God by denying a right He has granted the male head of the household, a much more serious offense.

Allah is categorical, the father or the male guardian e.g. brother or uncle if the father is deceased decides who females for whom Allah has made then responsible will marry. Allah did this in part to ensure that females marry only believers.

2:221 Do not marry unbelieving women (idolaters), until they believe: A slave woman who believes is better than an unbelieving woman, even though she allures you. Nor marry (your girls) to unbelievers until they believe: A man slave who believes is better than an unbeliever, even though he allures you. Unbelievers do (but) beckon you to the Fire. But Allah beckons by His Grace to the Garden (of bliss) and forgiveness, and makes His Signs clear to mankind: That they may celebrate His praise.

Yousaf Ali translation

The preceding decree could be considered justification for killing the daughter where the rule of law is Islamic. But, what about her husband?

The title to the chattel that is a female under Islamic law i.e. Sharia cannot be transferred to another man without the explicit consent, usually in writing, of the title-holder, the father in this case, the man who murdered his daughter and her husband.

What the man his daughter married did, was literally steal the property of the man Allah made responsible for the disposal of the chattel. Whether killing him was justified is a matter for the courts.

Bernard Payeur June 29, 2014

Shafia Honour Killings