THERE can rarely have been a more inaccurate misnomer than the term “honour crime” being used to describe offences where people accused of bringing shame on their families or communities are attacked or even murdered.
Despicable crimes such as the rape and murder of Bradford beautician Samia Shahid in Pakistan over the divorce of her first husband should not be given the kudos of being described in terms of a matter of “honour”. The Yorkshire Post reveals today how there has been a significant increase in the reporting of such violence and abuse across the region in recent years.
Concerningly, despite hundreds of reports being recorded in South Yorkshire in the past two years, only two people have been charged with most alleged victims deciding not to support police action. Bradford West MP Naz Shah, instrumental in ensuring Samia’s death was not covered up after it was initially claimed she had died of natural causes, knows exactly how high the stakes are after receiving death threats in relation to the case.
The politician’s words must be heeded when she speaks of the need to “root out” such offending. The task has been made harder by the failure to ignore the warnings that brave MPs like Keighley’s Ann Cryer were making years ago, but the difficult course being taken by Naz Shah and those who speak out – in stark contrast with those who commit such offences – is the truly honourable one.