January 30th, 2012
01:30 PM ET

Islam doesn't justify 'honor murders,' experts insist

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

(CNN) - Zainab Shafia's crime was to run off to marry a man her parents hated. Middle sister Sahar's crime was to wear revealing clothes and have secret boyfriends. Youngest sister Geeti's crime was to do badly in school and call social workers for help dealing with a family home in turmoil.

The punishment for all three teenage Canadian sisters was the same: death.

Their executioner: their brother, acting on instructions from the father to run their car off the road.

Another family member, their father's first wife in a polygamous marriage, was also killed.

Hamed Shafia, his father, Mohammed, and his mother, Tooba Mohammed Yahya, were sentenced to life in prison for murder, with Judge Robert Maranger excoriating their "twisted notion of honor, a notion of honor that is founded upon the domination and control of women, a sick notion of honor that has absolutely no place in any civilized society."

Leading Muslim thinkers wholeheartedly endorsed the Canadian judge's verdict, insisting that "honor murders" had no place and no support in Islam.

"There is nothing in the Quran that justifies honor killings. There is nothing that says you should kill for the honor of the family," said Taj Hargey, director of the Muslim Educational Centre of Oxford in England.

"This idea that 'somehow a girl has besmirched our honor and therefore the thing to do is kill her' is bizarre, and Muslims should stop using this defense," he said, arguing that the practice is cultural, not religious in origin.

"You cannot say this is what Islam approves of. You can say this is what their culture approves of," he said.

The Shafia family is originally from Afghanistan.

Experts say honor murders take place in many parts of the world.

"It's definitely a problem that happens in many different places: the Middle East, Pakistan, Bangladesh and among immigrant communities in North America," said Nadya Khalife, a researcher on women's rights in the Arab world for Human Rights Watch.

Several Arab countries and territories, including Iraq, Kuwait, Syria, Yemen and the Palestinian territories, have laws providing lesser sentences for honor murders than for other murders, Human Rights Watch says.

Egypt and Jordan also have laws that have been interpreted to allow reduced sentences for honor crimes, the group says.

Reliable figures of the number of honor murders are hard to come by, Khalife said, but she pointed to a United Nations Population Fund estimate of 5,000 per year.

Khalife agreed that the practice should not be blamed on Islam.

"It's not linked to religion; it's more cultural," she said. "There have been several Islamic scholars who have issued fatwas against honor killing."

Mohammed Shafia, who denied murder, said himself in court that Islam did not justify honor murders.

"In our religion, a person who kills his wife or daughter, there is nothing more dishonorable," he testified.

But Shafia was heard condemning his dead children in wiretapped conversations played in court.

"May the devil defecate on their graves! This is what a daughter should be? Would a daughter be such a whore?" he said.

Hargey, the director of the Muslim Educational Centre, said violence was sometimes the result of painful transition.

"Muslims are in a state of flux," he said.

"They are between two worlds: the ancient world and the new technological age," he said. "Women are getting rights and the ability to choose their own spouses. The family in Canada didn't know how to respond to this: the conflict between the discipline of children and the new reality."

Irshad Manji, the author of "Allah, Liberty and Love: Courage to Reconcile Faith and Freedom," said there was another conflict at work in honor murders, a term CNN uses in preference to "honor killings" because the latter phrase does not properly describe the crime.

It is "a tribal tradition that emphasizes the family or the tribe or the community over the individual," she said.

Although the practice may not be Islamic, she said, not all Muslims understand the distinction.

"It is a problem within Islam because of how Muslims often confuse culture and religion," she said. "It's Muslims who have to learn to separate culture and religion. If we don't, Islam will continue to get the bad name that it gets."

But one vocal British campaigner against honor violence points out that not all the crimes are perpetrated by Muslims.

Jasvinder Sanghera, who was the victim of a forced marriage, is not Muslim; she is Sikh.

"Significant cases are happening within South Asian communities, be it Pakistani, Indian, Sikh, Muslim, Kurdish, Iranian, Middle Eastern communities," she said.

"And we have to recognize that because the statistics don't lie. I am not standing here trying to embarrass those communities. But equally, those communities should be ashamed because this is happening in their community and they are not taking a stand," she said.

On the other hand, honor murders are not a problem in Indonesia, which has the world's largest Muslim population.

"No such a practice can be found among Indonesian Muslims," said Azyumardi Azra, the director of the graduate school at the State Islamic University in Jakarta, Indonesia.

" 'Honor killing' is, I believe, a cultural problem among Arab and South Asian Muslims. I don't think that kind of practice has an Islamic basis," he said.

Although women and girls make up the overwhelming number of victims, there have been at least some male victims, including Ahmet Yildiz, a gay Turkish man whose fugitive father is the main suspect in his 2008 shooting death.

Britain has had about a dozen honor murders per year for the past several years, said Ghayasuddin Siddiqui of the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain.

He, too, said the crimes were not justified by Islam.

"This comes from tribal customs where the father - not both parents - see children as their property. A girl decides to marry somebody of whom their parents do not approve, and they conspire and find some way to kill and dispose of this body," he said. "This is a kind of misplaced shame that parents feel that their daughter has decided to marry somebody of her choosing, not theirs."

Britain's Crown Prosecution Service has an expert devoted to prosecuting honor-based violence, Nazir Afzal.

Convicting perpetrators can be difficult, he said.

"There is a wall of silence around this, and people are not prepared to talk," he said.

But Afzal insisted that it was "absolutely important that you bring every single person to justice because you want to deter other people from doing it."

And along with the Islamic scholars and human rights advocates, he rejected out of hand the idea that religion justified it.

"At the end of the day, murder is murder. There is no faith on Earth, no community on Earth that justifies this," he said.

"Abrahamic faiths say 'Thou shalt not kill,' " he pointed out. "At the end of the day, nobody should die for this."

CNN's Paula Newton, Atika Shubert, Bharati Naik, Ashley Hayes, Ivan Watson and Becky Anderson contributed to this report.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Canada • Islam • Violence

soundoff (2,115 Responses)
  1. Amit-Atlanta-USA

    Anwar Iqbal in Pakistan's #1 newspaper -Dawn

    "Muslim societies have become barren; incapable of providing the intellectual infrastructure that produces tolerance and patience."

    dawn. com/2012/01/31/religious-violence-betrays-intellectual-bankruptcy. html

    January 31, 2012 at 11:08 am |
  2. Mohammed

    Honor killings predate Islam. For you simpletons out there, that means it happened before Islam existed.

    January 31, 2012 at 10:01 am |
    • wakeup333

      The issue is who's doing the majority of them today. Yeah, stoning is in the Old Testament. But who stones people for adultery today? Who kills people for blasphemy & apostasy today? Who stands on street corners saying their religion will dominate the world today? And that people who insult it should be beheaded? In London & New York today?

      Who's doing that?

      January 31, 2012 at 10:08 am |
    • wrong dirtbag

      While that might be true that honor killings pre-date Islam, why is it that Muslims appear to be the only people doing them? Is it ignorance? Illiteracy?

      January 31, 2012 at 10:46 am |
    • wakeup333

      Muslims are taught from birth to hate & despise non-Muslims. It's in the Quran:

      “ the (only) religion (acceptable) before God is Islam." (3:19)
      " If anyone desires a religion other than Islam, never will it be accepted of him." (3: 85)
      “You are the noblest community ever raised up for mankind.” (3:110)
      " The unbelievers among the people of the book and the pagans shall burn forever in the fire of Hell. They are the vilest of all creatures. (98.6).
      "Surely the vilest of animals in Allah’s sight are those who disbelieve. (8.55)
      "The unbelievers are your inveterate enemy. (4:101)
      "Mohammad is God's apostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another. (48:29).
      "It is unlawful for a believer to kill another believer, accidents excepted. (4:92)
      "Believers, take neither the Jews nor the Christians for your friends. (5:51)
      "Make war on them until idolatry shall cease and God's religion shall reign supreme. (8:40)
      "Fight against them until idolatry is no more and God's religion reigns supreme. (2:193)
      "The true believers fight for the cause of God, but the infidels fight for the devil. (4:76)
      "We will put terror into the hearts of the unbelievers. (3:151)
      "I shall cast terror into the hearts of the infidels. Strike off their heads, strike off the very tips of their fingers. (8:12)

      January 31, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • wakeup333

      The Reliance of the Traveler, the Sunni Sharia law guide, says Muslims will face NO punishment for "a Muslim killing a non-Muslim" or "a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring's offspring." (1.2, page 584)

      January 31, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • rick

      trying to justify "honor killings" because they predate Islam? absurd. who is the simpleton in this dialogue? And you and your ilk want Iran to have Nuclear weapons?

      January 31, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
    • abbot

      Sharia clearly tells stoning of adulterers to protect honor.
      Islam as whole was copied from pagan moon god religion. So they clearly brought in the honor killings that were prevelant in pagan religions that predates islam.

      January 31, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
  3. dalhousie123

    Can a Muslim tell me what the penalty for apostasy is in Islam?

    January 31, 2012 at 10:01 am |
  4. well

    Islam doesn't condone honor killing, suicide bombing, forced conversions of non-Muslims, mistreatment of puppy dogs or anything else that makes people sad. It is a religion of peace. Just keep saying that while reading about Muslims engaging in honor killing, suicide bombing, forced conversions of non-Muslims, mistreatment of puppy dogs and everything else that makes people sad.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:49 am |
    • W

      The only problem with that argument is that the major religion in the United States, Christianity, is based upon a book with very similar teachings to those you are loosely referring to. Islam as a religion is no better or worse than Christianity. What you should be worried about is the interpretation of fanatical people of the Bible or the Quran.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:54 am |
  5. peace

    The article makes a clear distinction between Islam and culture. Islam is not in the lives of muslims and that is the reason, they follow culture more than Islam. Though the article provides a balanced view, this article states the statements of those who dont hold any ground in Islam themselves as Scholars. Taj Hargey and Irshad Manji are no scholars and hold no position of authority in Islam. If CNN can get statements from big scholars of the muslim world i.e., from Saudi, Pakistan or Egypt, this may have more impact in their report. In fact, many views of Taj Hargey and Irshad Manji are apologetic and Anti-Islam. CNN should stop promoting such people are representatives of Islam.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:47 am |
    • Nana

      My husband spent months there, travelling, and found no hatred. He found a kind and welcoming people, very hospitable, who did not appear to hate anybody. We see these huge and hating crowds on TV, but a small square can look pretty crowded with a relatively small group of people in comparison to an entire population. One of our dear friends who was born in Turkey but now lives here had a boss who fired him for no reason and was later heard to say that all Muslims should be nuked. This young man has dedicated his life to paying for his sisters' educations so that they will have choices. I am proud to claim this young man as my family. Educate yourselves, people–dont' just spew reactionary crap.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:55 am |
  6. bernie


    Seriously people. Sure you're allow to have an opinion. But these extreme viewpoint based on your "expertise through TV" Many muslims are bad but NOT ALL are bad. Is that so hard say? Instead of assuming the entire ten of millions of muslim are all hellspawn? Don't try to tell me you're not a TV watching lemming... if you do, you are a liar

    January 31, 2012 at 9:46 am |
    • well

      There are plenty of Muslims who would not chop your head off or blow up a bus full of kids. Problem is there are WAY to many that would.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:52 am |
    • bernie


      January 31, 2012 at 10:02 am |
  7. Nana

    AGuest9–did you read this article? Have you read the Quran? I have and indeed, most of what you are reacting to is entirely tribal. The Quran is very specific about the treatment of women–in fact, the 8th line in specifically commands that the Moslem people were to cease practicing female infanticide immediately. It codified a set of women's rights that was, for its time, the most progressive and forward thinking set of rules in existence. Modesty was not only for women–the lines interpreted as requiring extremely modest dress for women actually cover the modesty of men as well. Islam as designed is a religion of peace and charity. If there is jihad, it is as my friend Ali said–"I practice jihad–I do it every day. My jihad is with myself as I strive to be the best man, the best husband, the best father and the best Moslem I can be." I agree that there are horrific examples out there, but they do NOT represent Islam. They are representative of a tribal culture that lingers on when it is long past ready to be released. Oh–and I am Jewish. I needed to overcome my own prejudices, so rather than simply react, I educated myself. It makes all the difference...

    January 31, 2012 at 9:45 am |
    • tallulah13

      Thank you dear sister for that meaningful post.

      January 31, 2012 at 11:23 am |
  8. lou

    until muslim's show me that they are truly a kind, loving, peaceful people, i will continue to be wary of them. they talk the talk, but don't walk the walk.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:37 am |
    • W

      By 'them' do you mean all 1 billion of them? That seems like it would be exhausting. Plus the administrative nightmare of all those peole lining up to prove to you that they are a kind people. Whew! I'm tired just thinking about it. I dont' know, it may be better if you just take a break from your post as the judge of humanity's goodness.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:41 am |
    • Mark

      Are Christians "a people". Do they fit those descriptions as well. Does that include the African Christians who have been massacaring eachother in Sub Sahara? Does that include Europeans who fought not one but TWO world wars not long ago? Does it include the US which bombs nations that have not attacked them?

      January 31, 2012 at 9:58 am |
    • JiJ

      There are many people who have grown up or live within the culture of Christianity, and then there are those who have chosen for themselves to follow Christ by accepting transformation in their spiritual life which often extends to the physical. "Christian" means "follower of Christ" – those who strive, with reliance on God's grace and help, to love as Jesus loved and to serve as Jesus served.

      January 31, 2012 at 11:01 am |
  9. Atheist

    Islam doesn't justify this behavior?

    Ummm, yeah it does. It doesn't mean that every Muslim will act this way...Inasmuch as not every Christian would murder an abortion doctor or every Jew would cast stones at a heathen, but read the Sura, Hadith and Qu'ran. This behavior is sanctioned.

    Wake up people. Much of the Islamic doctrine is violent. Don't let the sweet parts fool you. So many Muslim and Muslimah put their religion, prophet and god above all else. Even common sense and society's law. Yet, not all Muslim believe this way. It is up to the individual to choose. It's much harder for them to be individual in a theocratic country with a Islamist government. Here in the US many Muslim came to get away from that control. But we need to watch the ones that want to implement their violent ways into our form of governing.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • Mohammed

      For a person who claims that they believe in reason (Atheist) you sure are ignorant. "Ummm, yeah it does" is not proof. Lets see a quote from the Koran which justifies honor killings. Honor killings occurred in the Middle East before Islam. It has its root in tribal culture. "The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool". Go headbutt a wall fool.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:46 am |
    • Atheist

      Hi there troll. Here ya' go...

      Ubada b. as-Samit reported: "Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: Receive (teaching) from me, receive (teaching) from me. Allah has ordained a way for those (women). When an unmarried male commits adultery with an unmarried female (they should receive) one hundred lashes and banishment for one year. And in case of married male committing adultery with a married female, they shall receive one hundred lashes and be stoned to death."
      (Book 017 # 4191)

      (Ummm, we don't do this in the US.)

      "Bad omen is in the woman, the horse and the home."
      (Sahih Al Bukhari 76/5)

      "If a monkey, a black dog or a woman passes in front of a praying person, his prayer is nullified."
      (Buhkari 8/102 & Hanbel 4/86)

      "Whoever changes his Islamic religion, kill him."
      (Bukhari 9/57)

      " No Muslim should be killed for killing a Kafir" (infidel).
      (Bukhari 9/50)

      I could go on and on....but, you get the picture. So many scholarly books...so little time.

      January 31, 2012 at 10:00 am |
    • Atheist

      Oh, BTW, Mo'....don't bang YOUR head too hard on that wall!

      January 31, 2012 at 10:05 am |
    • bernie

      @Atheist: It takes THAT MANY WORDS for you to be WRONG?!!! You make me embarrassed to be an atheist

      January 31, 2012 at 10:06 am |
    • dalhousie123

      Yes these quotes are in the Koran. That is scary.

      January 31, 2012 at 10:06 am |
    • Mohammed

      What a failure. You've proven that you have the fantastic ape skill of copying and pasting. Which one of those statements states that honor killing is justified? Which one of those statements is from the Koran? I'll let you in on what wise men know; the answer is none. "Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent". If you want to hang around with the big kids its probably better for you not to say anything. That way you can trick everyone into thinking you're actually smart.

      January 31, 2012 at 10:17 am |
    • dalhousie123

      Oh mo. would it help to clarify that the quotes are from the Qur'an and Hadith

      January 31, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • Mohammed

      Dalhousie. You're ignorance is showing. None of Athiest's quotes are from the Koran. You two are beyond just ignorant. Google your local psychiatrist and book an appointment.

      January 31, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
  10. Elliot

    Ok, so it's not a Muslim problem but a Middle East problem. So I guess religion is not the problem here, it's just the whole area in general and all it's inhabitants. In the west we just ground our kids or give them a lecture, in the Arab world you get acid thrown on your face and then tossed in the river. Indonesia should go out of their way to distinguish themselves from the barbarian animals that inhabit the middle east and practice these cultural past times. I would not want to be associated with these acts just because of the religion I'm tied to. I denounced my Catholic failth for lots of resons, I think these people should do the same.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:35 am |
    • Sanaz

      You don't understand the concept of being coherent do you? You first accept that its a cultural issue but in the end you say its a religious issue? Yea you're real smart...in the village idiot kind of way.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:50 am |
  11. dalhousie123

    what is the penalty for apostasy in Islam?

    January 31, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • Atheist

      "Whoever changes his Islamic religion, kill him."
      (Bukhari 9/57)

      January 31, 2012 at 10:02 am |
  12. bernie


    January 31, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • Atheist

      Hey there Bernie.
      Find the thread on those issues. This is about Islam. You are trying to deflect. We do not buy into that.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:37 am |
    • Elliot

      Look, the old 'well somebody did something worse so this isn't that bad argument'. Sounds like kindergarten logic, how cute.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:37 am |
    • Doug

      So? Do two wrongs make a right in your mind? Did we not learn that this was wrong, and take steps to end these practices?

      Should we excuse these things now because others did them in the past?!?

      Logically, these acts stand on their own, the wrongness of them is not justified by what used to be done or by who. The pattern is apparent and sufficient to draw a conclusion: Islam encourages these behaviors, then further encourages lies to avoid responsibility rather than stand up to any direct attempts at justification of these acts. We can draw these conclusions by the actions of their people in stark contrast to the words they use. Not only the acts that they commit (i.e. the honor killings), but the acts they do NOT take (they make no attempt to intervene, no attempt to prosecute, and no attempt to prevent further acts of violence or change the teachings which clearly *support* the acts). These claims of what is not being done can be asserted because unlike religions in the US, Sharia law is both a religious teaching AND an integral part of the legal system, and thus their claims of non-support fall flat in the face of their implicit support.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:57 am |
    • Atheist

      And to Doug goes 1st Prize.
      He gets it.

      January 31, 2012 at 10:03 am |
    • bernie

      well doug. lets hope they don't build an entire economy and society around disgusting acts like the US government did and the South did. They are on their way though.

      January 31, 2012 at 10:04 am |
    • bernie

      @atheist: you have no credibility to give any awards. lol

      January 31, 2012 at 10:05 am |
  13. Dave

    The Canadian legal system should be complemented.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:28 am |
    • AGuest9

      Unfortunately, Canada abolished the death penalty in 1976. This is the perfect case for it. The three of them should be taken out on the Wolf Islander II and dropped in the middle of the Lake!

      January 31, 2012 at 10:52 am |
  14. Denae

    I love how they deny that honor killings have a place in Islam. They certainly DO. Why else would they be taking place ALL OVER THE WORLD. They kill women for showing skin, for doing anything that they deem wrong. Explain to me why, if honor killings have NO place in Islam, WHY are they happening in the U.S. and all over the world? This is more LIES and deception by the Islamic world. Lies and deception are okay, as long as they are doing it to advance Islam. The Quran TEACHES THIS.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:27 am |
    • JoeG

      Please cite chapter and verse of the Quran where it teaches this, and where it justifies honor killings.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:42 am |
    • jimtanker

      They have honor killings in the bible too. I dont know how a bunch of Xtians can start throwing stones when they need to clean up their own house first.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:44 am |
  15. sisi

    Make no excuses. These people are religious fanatics and their religion dictates this behavior.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:22 am |
    • Church of Suicidal

      You apparently cannot read.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • Hoda

      Sisi, go get yourself some ESL classes so you can learn how to read. If you're gonna speak the English language you better learn how to read it. Or if you know something that we don't lets see the proof. Quote the part in the Koran which dictates honor killing. If you don't find anything do the world a favor and dig a hole in the ground too deep to get out of.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:36 am |
  16. Dan Jones

    The attempt to use the Old Testament Law to in effect say,"see, other faiths condone violence and judgement for sin," is a vile act of deception. The Bible is a progressive. It is the history of man's fall from fellowship with God and the journey back pass the obstacle of sin. Sinful man could not fellowship with God anymore than paper can fellowship with fire. God is righteous, holy, and he is the judge. As such he can not just wink at sin and ignore it. Under the law of Moses God made a covenant with man where man could have at least some fellowship. It was based on a strict observance of what is right and moral, and on the sacrifice of animals to cover the sins of the nation from year to year. But this was only a stepping stone, a teaching method. We were to learn that 1. We are all sinners, and in need of salvation. 2. We can not change ourselves nor atone for our own sins. 3. That God is both holy and merciful in that he judged our sins, settling justice and restoring fellowship for us through the death of Jesus.

    But the point is we are not under law anymore and haven't been for 2000 years. It was abolished, not by man, but by God. Does that mean that sin is any different or the punishment for sin? NO. But there is a better covenant and a better way, one that calls us to forgive our enemies, love those who hate us.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:16 am |
    • dalhousie123

      It is also a great fairy tale that contains some historical information but is littered with contradictions.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:20 am |
    • Nonimus

      @Dan Jones,
      That's an interesting way of viewing the OT. So does that mean that the 10 Commandments are no longer in effect?

      January 31, 2012 at 9:29 am |
    • The Woof

      Well put Dan. However, I will respectfully disagree on a part of one of your points. We can change. Jesus's life was the example showed that a person could lead a life in righteousness even though tempted by the world. His best example of the being given a chance to change was telling the woman about to be stoned for adultry was "Go and sin no more."

      January 31, 2012 at 9:35 am |
  17. mccgeno

    All religion is medieval.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • TheWiz71

      All ignorant comments like this are s*upid.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:20 am |
    • dalhousie123

      TheWiz71: why is a comment like this ignorant? I would argue that a christian, Muslim or Buddist who says that you are not going to heaven unless you follow their laws is the one being ignorant.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:22 am |
    • AGuest9

      True statement

      January 31, 2012 at 10:53 am |
  18. SLY

    Right on Judge Robert Maranger ... show the people of the world we won't allow that cultural crap to fester in our Canadian society.... show the world you will be dealt with in the highest extreme of the law if found guilty. Let this be a eye opener for the rest of "YOU" who still live these ideals and settle on our soil... If you live in Canada now or are thinkin to immigrating to here you better fly straight ..... Canada's Immigration Laws and practises should wise up... when you goto Toronto, Caucasians are now the minority.... duh !!!! what's wrong with that picture.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • dalhousie123

      Pathetic, I am Canadian as well. I don't understand how your comment "when you goto Toronto, Caucasians are now the minority.... duh !!!! what's wrong with that picture," has anything to do with the rest of what you said. I agree with you that people who come to Canada should follow Canadian laws, but what you are saying sounds more like racism.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:16 am |
    • dalhousie123

      ... I mean how "white" do you have to be to be considered Caucasian.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:18 am |
  19. Doug

    Let's see, the vast, vast majority of honor killings are done by Muslims, yet there is no connection.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:11 am |
    • The Woof

      So what do so called "Christians" murder for? Money, shoes, drugs, lost girlfriends, husbands, etc. What part of culture not religion didn't you read?

      January 31, 2012 at 9:21 am |
    • Mohammed

      It's done by people from Middle Eastern countries, most of which are muslim. The connection is the Middle East, not Islam. Grow a brain and learn to distinguish. Like the article said, muslims of other cultures don't have this problem. Honor killings predates Islam in the Middle East.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • Sam A.

      Lets see... the entire number of such crimes is way way much less than 1% of the Muslim population and there is still no connection... your are pathetic, Doug.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:29 am |
  20. AGuest9

    I'm sure that these experts would insist that random killings in markets by explosives strapped to mentally-handicapped children aren't justified by Islam, either, but Muslims carry the acts out, nonetheless. I would bet the Qur'an is against a man and his mother killing the man's wife if she bore him yet another daughter. I also bet the Qur'an is against murdering your daughters and your daughters' aunt and dumping them into a canal because they are "getting out of hand". A religion of peace? Not from what I've seen.

    January 31, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • Tim

      Christianity, like Islam, instructs people not to kill but many Christians have murdered. Does this make all Christians murderers? No. Honor killings cut across religious lines, which would suggest the common variable is not religion. It seems to be cultural more than religious but is perceived as religious by those who do not see the subtleties.

      January 31, 2012 at 9:13 am |
    • jon

      I've criticized Islam before, but I don't believe this is really about the religion as much as it is the culture of the religion. There are probably a million or so American Muslims. How many of them would you expect to commit an "honor killing"?

      January 31, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • pervert alert

      "There are probably a million or so American Muslims. How many of them would you expect to commit an "honor killing"?"


      January 31, 2012 at 9:50 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.