A 10-year-old girl was killed by her own father who strangled her with his belt because she “raised her voice” at him.
Little Hadith Orujlu’s dad Hussein Alef has admitted killing the girl with a belt and using her manteau – an Iranian jacket which falls down to the knees in agreement with Iran’s modesty laws – to suffocate her.
Local media reported that in court, Hussein admitted to asking his neighbour what the punishment would be for murdering his daughter and had felt he understood he would not be punished.
Hussein confessed to the police: “My daughter raised her voice to me a lot, I got angry for a moment and couldn’t control myself anymore.”
A witness named Rahimeh Faizi said: “He knew that because he was a father, the law did not provide a severe punishment.
“He said ‘I will pay a ransom and stay in prison for a few years'”.
Forensic reports found that the young girl had died from asphyxiation after being strangled, Iran International TV reported.
Under the Sharia law in Iran “an eye for an eye” provision, murder is punishable by death.
But the law offers exemptions for the killing of a child by a legal guardian, which is generally taken to refer to the dad or granddad.
Raha Bahreini, the Iran Researcher at Amnesty International, told Fox News: “Fathers or paternal grandfathers who kill their children or grandchildren are not subject to proportionality, which may exacerbate the risk of ‘honour crimes’ against girls and women.”
The killing reportedly took place before 14-year-old Romina Ashrafi was beheaded by her father in an honour killing which shocked Iran last month.
After Romina’s murder, Iran passed a law aimed at protecting children from violence, which had been stalled for more than a decade.
The new law was ratified on June 7 by the hard-line watchdog Guardians Council, which must approve all bills passed by parliament to make sure they’re consistent with the country’s constitution and Islamic law.
If the child-protection law had passed earlier, it could have saved the lives of both Romina and Hadith, local sources suggested.
Despite the new law, the Iranian government is yet to enact draft legislation authored over nine years ago that would criminalise gender-based violence, which is widespread in Iran.
While there is no official data pertaining to honour killings in Iran, internal news agency ISNA estimates that an average of 350 to 450 honour killings occur in the Islamic Republic every year.
The agency’s study found that honour killings and murders committed by a family member make up almost 20 per cent of all homicides in Iran.
Journalist at Iran International TV, Nargess Tavassolian said: “More news of these crimes have come to light, but do keep in mind that many times these crimes are not reported, and they do not find their way into the media.”