The stoning of Du’a Khalil Aswad, teenage girl from Kurdistan, Iraq took place on April 7, 2007. People who stoned Du’a Khalil Aswad to death refer to such stoning as honor killing. As you can see in the video, the most shocking part of honor killing is how ecstatic everyone is about killing the girl. The video was recorded with a cell phone camera so the footage is not the greatest, however you can see the police standing around and doing absolutely nothing while a defenseless 17-year-old girl is being stoned. The onlookers smile like it’s the RC helicopter demo they’re watching. But most of all – the executioners themselves cheer as life of Du’a Khalil Aswad is ended with heavy stones dropped on her head. It’s like this honor killing was the highlight of their year. They all got together to watch the spectacle, everyone seems to enjoy it, and not one moves a finger to try to stop this gruesome ritual.
Du’a Khalil Aswad was stoned to death because she fell in love with a boy of a different religion. Her family as well as local religious leaders felt shamed by her behavior and executed this honor killing – to literally do her a favor by ending her life for stumbling off the right path. Some reports say that the reason behind the stoning of Du’a Khalil Aswad was her conversion to Islam from Yazidi faith. However according to locals, her Sunni Muslim boyfriend confirmed that she had never converted to Islam, rather she was stoned because she failed to return home one night.
The stoning took place in the town square of Bashika, in Ninawa Governorate, Iraq. Thousands of attackers reportedly gathered round for the stoning. Du’a Khalil Aswad was being stoned for approximately 30 minutes, during which she was taunted by the crowd. As can be seen in the video, attackers are kicking her while she’s lying in the dirt, while several people try to get their best cell phone shots of her. With her face full of blood, she attempts to sit up and call for help, but countless kicks keep coming from every direction and large chunks of stone are being thrown at her head. Then a big concrete block is dropped on her head and Du’a Khalil Aswad no longer moves. When the block is dropped the second time, her skull gets obviously crushed as can be guessed by large amount of blood that starts gushing from her head.
One would think the honor killing would end at this moment, but this wasn’t the end for Du’a Khalil Aswad. After she was stoned to death, her body was tied to a car and dragged through the streets of Bashika. She was the allegedly buries along with the dead dog to show that she was worthless. Medico-Legal Institute in Mosul exhumed her body at a later date to test whether Du’a Khalil Aswad was still a virgin. Autopsy performed revealed that Du’a Khalil Aswad in fact died a virgin. The worst part for me is the fact that people who stoned her to death probably think to this day that this honor killing was the right thing that helped save her soul.
Honor killing video depicting stoning and death of Du’a Khalil Aswad is below. Warning – video is graphic and upsetting. Some may find it offensive as it shows death of a 17 year old girl being killed by a large block of concrete being dropped on her head. Don’t watch if you are easily offended (volume warning):
This video is a report on the stoning (known throughout the Middle East as Sangsar):