16 year, Afghan born Morsal Obeidi lived in Hamburg, Germany with her family of five siblings. She went to high school and dressed as German girls her age, despite family pressure to adapt to more conservative clothing and behavior. Reports indicate that Morsal faced pressure, mistreatment and assaults at the hands of her father and siblings at home. She also was a regular visitor at Child and Youth Services welfare center. In 2007, her family sent Morsal to Afghanistan for 9 months to be‘re-educated’ about religion and culture and returned to Germany only after she promised ‘to be obedient’.
In May 2008, Morsal was stabbed and beaten to death at a parking lot by her 23 year old brother Ahmed Obeidi in a pre-meditated crime. Ahmed who has a history of criminal violence, asked a cousin to meet Morsal and bring her to a parking lot on the pretense of wanting to “talk to her”. He stabbed his sister 23 times then fled as she died an hour later.
Women’s Rights Groups staged a demonstration in front of the Hamburg courthouse when Ahmad’s trial began in October 2008. Obeidi was sentenced to life imprisonment in November 2009. When the verdict was read out in court the accused yelled that had the trial taken place in Kabul, Afghanistan, he would have already been released long ago. Relatives of the accused also assaulted and threatened a journalist in the room. Hamburg Judge Wolfgang Backen said while reading the verdict “He killed out of pure intolerance,”, adding that the murder was “treacherous” and a premeditated “bloodbath” after all other attempts to “discipline” his sister had failed.
In a tribute video, Morsal’s friends said: “You died because you wanted to choose how to live your life. “. Morsal is remembered as a bright girl who enjoyed life in Germany and wanted the same freedoms and opportunities her German classmates had.
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