Published: Sat, May 12, 2018
Worldwide | By Stella Potter

Noura Hussein sentenced to death for killing rapist husband

Noura Hussein sentenced to death for killing rapist husband

A young woman in Sudan has been sentenced to death for killing her husband after he allegedly raped her. When she refused to consumate the marriage, her husband invited two of his brothers and a male cousin to help him rape her, the rights group said. As of about 4 p.m. on May 11, more than 136,000 people had signed the petition asking for Noura to be spared from the death penalty.

Concise News learnt that the legal age for marriage in Sudan is 10. Another member of her legal team Muawya Khidir said that she was only defending herself when she killed the man and was mentally and psychologically disturbed as a result of rape, The Guardian reported.

Forced to marry at 15, Hussein ran away from home and sought refuge with her aunt for three years.

For the first time in the history of the Sudan the public came to the protection of women sentenced to death for the murder of her husband, the Washington Post reported.

"Criminalisation of Noura for defending herself from assault and, in particular a death sentence, would violate her rights under the Sudanese Constitution and worldwide law". SEEMA has been campaigning in support of Hussein. Groups such as Equality Now are writing to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir to plead for clemency.

"Noura Hussein is a victim and the sentence against her is an intolerable act of cruelty", Seif Magango, Amnesty International's Deputy Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes, wrote in a statement. People gathered to support Noura for her last trial. But Hussein's case was different. "She stood for her rights".

The execution of a young woman, a victim of gender based violence, the group wrote, "is a regress in the eyes of worldwide law and an irreparable damage for Sudan's and perhaps more broadly Africa's global reputation".

Sudan is ranked 165 out of 188 countries on the U.N.'s Gender Inequality Index, which measures how women fare compared to men when it comes to access to health, education, political participation and employment opportunities. "They chose death and now the death penalty has been handed down", said Badr Eldin Salah, an activist from the Afrika Youth Movement who was in the court.

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