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27 Kurdish women die in ‘honour killings’

November 27, 2007

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ARBIL (Iraq): At least 27 women have died in so-called “honour killings” over the past four months in northern Kurdish Iraq, an official from the regional government said Monday.

Aziz Mohammed, human rights minister in the Kurdish regional government, said 10 of the murdered women were from the Arbil, 11 from Dohuk and six from Sulaimaniyah.

“These are alleged honour killings. We can say that the violence against women continues” in Kurdish Iraq, Mohammed said.

He said 97 women — 60 in Arbil, 21 in Dohuk and 16 in Sulaimaniyah —had attempted to commit suicide by self-immolation during the four months. The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq has regularly highlighted “honour killings” of Kurdish women as among Iraq’s most severe human rights abuses.

Aso Kamal, a 42-year-old British Kurdish Iraqi campaigner, says that from 1991 to 2007, 12,500 women were murdered for reasons of “honour” or committed suicide in the three Kurdish provinces of Iraq.—AFP