This time the bloody honor killing took place in a public place, for all to see — outside the Lahore High Court. The short BBC report noted:
Police said 30-year old Farzana Bibi died on the spot after being attacked with bricks and sticks. Her father handed himself in, but police say her brothers and former fiance, who also took part in the attack, were still free. …
Farzana Bibi’s parents accused her husband, Muhammad Iqbal, of kidnapping her, and had filed a case against him at the High Court. However, she testified to police that she had married him of her own accord. Police said the couple had been engaged for a number of years.
Religion, apparently, had nothing to do with this event, which was said to be a mere cultural phenomenon. However, the report ended by noting:
Under Pakistani law, the victim’s family is allowed to forgive the killer. However, in many cases family members are themselves responsible for the killing.
And what legal system forms the foundation of Pakistani law? What, for example, has been the root cause for the headline-generating Pakistan cases in which believers in a minority faith, usually Christianity, are accused of apostasy against the faith at the heart of the nation’s government and culture?
(By the way, the Associated Press included — in its lede — another detail BBC missed or omitted, the fact that Bibi was pregnant at the time she was murdered.)
There is no need to dwell on the Islamic element of this crime and it would be wrong to suggest that all Muslims in Pakistan, and elsewhere, practice, accept or ignore “honor killings.” In fact, a Washington Post report on this same crime did an excellent job of including the essential details. For example: