Dec 17 2011
ACID ATTACKS on Muslim Women continue as Pakistan finally passes a law that would actually punish the men who do this
Only by the grace of God do some of these women survive such horrific acid attacks on them by Muslim men, often in their own families. They are not dead, but their lives are essentially over. No other Muslim man would have them. (Not exactly a bad thing)
SUN NEWS (H/T Susan K) Memoona, 23, a survivor of an acid attack, smiles while posing for photographs at her residence in Karachi, Pakistan on December 14, 2011. Memoona says the acid attack took place on August 13, 2002, when a boy threw acid on her face and body over an old family feud. Memoona, who is currently enrolled in nursing school, said she lost her eye but not her spirit.
The Pakistan Senate has unanimously passed two bills that impose strict punishments on those who attack women with acid. “This is milestone indeed and from now on, acid and burn attack will be officially recognized as a crime. Punishment will be increased from minimum 14 years to life term imprisonment. For the survivors who were present today in the Senate, democracy is not a myth anymore, they got justice.”
IB TIMES Khodeza Begum (L) and her daughter Sonali attend an international conference of acid attack survivors in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Begum and Sonali were attacked with acid by a neighbour due to a land dispute in 2001. The Bangladesh chapter of the ASF states that the victims are usually young women who are attacked for refusing to accept marriage proposals, denying dowry and refusing to have sex. Robbery, family feuds, land and property disputes are some of the other reasons for acid attacks on women, a violent act often motivated by jealousy or revenge.
The crime of throwing acid on women is particularly common in South and Southeast Asian countries. The number of such incidents in these countries is much higher and, tragically, on the rise, when compared to statistics from other countries. Pakistan’s passage of these bills suggests that women of other Asian countries can look forward to similar reforms.
Mauricio Resende “I can not think of getting married now. I could not face an abusive husband. I do not want people to pity me. Now I want to be with my own feet and earn a living. Everyone wishes he or she is beautiful but in my opinion, your face is not everything. The real beauty is inside a person, not outside. ”
Some of the younger victims were still traumatized by the attacks. Raffat, another burn victim who was only seventeen photographed. Attacked by her own cousin after she refused to marry him, he avenged her while she was asleep, only nine days before their wedding. At first she was calm, but fragile façade broke down when we sit down to talk about the night of the attack.