Tag Archives: Banaz Mahmod

Banaz: An ‘honour’ killing

Still from 'Banaz - A love story'

Still from ‘Banaz – A love story’

Artist and activist Deeyah explains the motivation behind her documentary film Banaz: A love story which features IKWRO. A shortened version of this documentary was shown on ITV on 31st October.

IKWRO marks the fifth anniversary of Banaz Mahmod’s death with an email campaign to Home Secretary Theresa May

Banaz Mahmod

Banaz Mahmod

Banaz Mahmod was a 20 year old Iraqi Kurdish woman who was accused of bringing shame on her family after she left a violent marriage and began a new relationship with a man she loved.  She was raped, tortured and strangled to death on 24 January 2006: five years ago today.

You can help us to ensure that this doesn’t happen to other women by sending an email to the Home Secretary Theresa May.

Banaz’s death could have been prevented.  She had told police four times that her father and uncle were planning to kill her.  She even gave them a letter naming the men she believed would carry out her murder, but this did not save her life.

Since Banaz’s murder the police have improved how they deal with honour killing, but there are still many police officers, social workers, medical staff and other professionals who don’t know how to help women like Banaz.  They need training and leadership from our government.

The Home Office is currently writing a new action plan to end violence against women.  We have just learned that the Home Secretary Theresa May is due to sign this off at a meeting on February 9.  Before she does, you can email  her and ask her to make sure the action plan is tough on ‘honour’ based violence.

How to do it:

1. Compose an email to mayt@parliament.uk

2. Put Honour based violence and the action plan on violence against women in the subject line, and write Dear Home Secretary at the top of the email.

3. Include the following points:

– I am writing to mark the fifth anniversary of the death of Banaz Mahmod.  Banaz was the victim of a brutal ‘honour’ killing which highlighted police failings in dealing with victims of ‘honour’ based violence.

– I know that since Banaz’s death the national response to ‘honour’ based violence has improved, but more must be done.  According to the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation, many police, social workers, medical staff and other professionals still don’t know how to identify ‘honour’ based violence or how to help victims.

– In your new action plan on violence against women, please include plans to deliver ‘honour’ based violence training and to increase government leadership in this area.

4. Don’t forget to put your name and the town where you live at the bottom of the email.

5. Hit SEND.

By taking the time to send this email today, you are taking a stand against the murder of women like Banaz Mahmod.  Thank you for joining us in marking the fifth anniversary of Banaz’s death, and for supporting our campaign.

Any questions?  Just email campaigns.ikwro@gmail.com.

Two more murderers of Banaz Mahmod sentenced to life in prison

Press release, 12 November 2010

The Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation welcomes the news that the remaining two suspects in the Banaz Mahmod murder trial, Mohammed Ali and Omar Hussain, have been found guilty at the Old Bailey today. Ali was sentenced to a minimum of 22 years and Hussain to 21 years.

Initially the Iraqi and Kurdistan Regional Governments were reluctant to hand Ali and Hussain over to the UK authorities, but they became the first suspects ever extradited to Britain from Iraq after sustained campaigning to bring them to justice by the London-based IKWRO.

Diana Nammi, Director of IKWRO today said:
“Today marks a major step forward in the campaign for Justice for Banaz. We would especially like to thank Detective Chief Inspector Caroline Goode and all of her team for their hard work in bringing Mohammed Ali and Omar Hussain to justice. We would also like to thank all of the individuals and organisations in the UK and in Kurdistan, as well as the UK, Iraqi and Kurdistan Regional Governments, whose efforts enabled this to happen.”

“The extradition and conviction of Ali and Hussain sends out a strong message that there can be no safe havens for those who kill in the name of ‘honour’. We call on all countries to protect women from this brutal practice and to ensure that all those who commit ‘honour’ killing face justice, where ever they are in the world.”

In January 2006 Banaz Mahmod was tortured and strangled, and her body stuffed into a suitcase which was found buried under a Birmingham patio three months later. Before her death Banaz had told police several times that her family were planning to kill her because she had fallen in love with Rahmat Suleimani, a man of whom they did not approve, but police failed to protect her.

“While strongly welcoming the successful prosecution of Ali and Hussain today, it is also important to learn from the failings in this case” said Diana Nammi today.

For further information and comment please contact:
Diana Nammi, 07862 733511

Sham justice: On the trial of Saleh Hama Ali in Iraqi-Kurdistan

Press release 18 June 2009

Banaz Mahmod was gang-raped and killed in a brutal ‘honour’ killing in January 2006. Her father Mahmod Mahmod, her uncle Ari Mahmod and one of his associates are currently in prison for their part in the crime. However these men did not perpetrate their crime alone. The UK police have been trying to extradite two further suspects, Mohammed Saleh Ali and Omar Hussain, who fled to the Kurdish region of Iraq back to the UK. These men must face the same system of justice that has put Ari and Mahmod Mahmod behind bars.

The Government of Iraq has agreed to extradite the two men. However, the Kurdistan Regional Government refuses to do so, preferring to hold a show trial of Mohammed Saleh Ali. IKWRO is concerned that this trial has little hope of achieving true justice. In many of the Kurdish regions murder and violence are still seen as legitimate methods of enforcing male dominance over women. Indeed Banaz Mahmod’s family has already withdrawn the case against Ali.

Just as in the case of Du’a Khalil Aswad, who died in an infamous public stoning in Bashiqa, we assert that the family has no right to decide whether or not the murderers go on trial. Banaz Mahmod and Du’a Khalil Aswad deserve justice, whatever decision their families make. Women deserve justice.

“We are calling on the Kurdish Regional Government to allow the United Kingdom to extradite Saleh Hama Ali, and to prevent Iraqi-Kurdistan from becoming a haven for so-called ‘honour’ killers -and a hell for women” said Diana Nammi, Director of IKWRO today. “We are calling for justice for Banaz. We ask all individuals and organisations to join their voice with ours in this campaign.”

Notes to editors:
The Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation (IKWRO) is a UK registered charity which provides advice and support to women and girls who face so-called ‘honour’ killings. Through our Justice for Banaz campaign IKWRO has highlighted police failings in dealing with Banaz before her death, and is calling for all those involved in her murder to be brought to justice.