Violence toward women in Middle East rising

Violence toward women in Middle East rising

By Lisa Carter

17 year old Henriette Karra was found stabbed to death last month in the family home just one day after graduating high school. Her father, Sami Karra, is accused of killing his daughter for dating a Muslim man. The 17-year-old teen had been beaten and threatened for dating the unidentified man who is currently serving time in prison on an unrelated charge. 

She moved out and had been living with friends and relatives prior to her murder. Henriette was staying with a relative when she texted a friend stating she was planning to convert to Islam when her Muslim boyfriend got out. The relative learned of this and told her father who became enraged and determined to stop his daughter from carrying out her plans. 

His hatred for his daughter speaks loudly and clearly in statements he made about her prior to her death. When Henriette’s mother asked him why he allowed his daughter to attend her graduation party, he stated, “Forget about her, let her go to hell," he said. It’s not worth another shekel to even chase after her, she’s garbage. We need to whip her, throw her away like a dog and see how she does. She’s already gone, I’m sick of her and you.”

Violence Against Women in the Middle East

Middle Eastern countries are most vulnerable to violence against women due to their Sharia Law. Despite this, community leaders and Israeli-Arab MKs were still outraged at the outcome of Henriette’s case. They insisted Israeli police did little to protect the young girl although she had complained and confirmed several times both to police and to a social worker that she feared for her life. 

Henriette Kari was a beautiful, smart, young girl whose life was cut short due to violence in the name of protecting the family honor. But what is honorable about murdering your own child? Teens both in America and in the Middle East face a lot of the same life decisions and peer pressures. Apparently, they can also suffer at the hands of those who are supposed to love them most. 

In an article dated November 2016 and updated December 2016, The Middle East Eye reported that eight Palestinian women and seven Israeli women had been brutally murdered as a result of domestic violence. As if the violence and killing were not enough, Joint List MK Aida Touma-Sliman advised that crimes against Palestinian women in Israel are not treated with the same urgency as crimes against Israeli women. 

There is a marked difference being made in women who are born in different regions, as well as a noticeable lack of involvement on the part of the police. These factors only serve to compound the problem and make the long-standing double standard of mistreatment of women that much more real with lasting impact. Are they even thinking about the children of these women? Are they not aware that they are breeding and perpetuating curses that continue to live on for generations? 

Many invoke these practices on their women in the name of family honor and respect for their cultural traditions. Jesus spoke of this dangerous mentality when he rebuked the staunch religious leaders of his day who placed their traditions as priorities in their hearts and neglected compassion, love, and mercy for their fellow man. When they brought to Him the woman caught in the act of adultery, they were ready to kill her, and wanted Jesus to approve. Yet, He refused and chose love and mercy. 

Photo: stock image

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