A Pakistani court this week charged five men with the “honor killing” of Farzana Iqbal, allegedly stoned to death by relatives outside of a Lahore courthouse while onlookers and police stood by and did nothing. Her crime: to have married a man other than the one her family had selected for her. Farzana’s murder sparked international outrage when the story broke in May, drawing condemnation from leaders worldwide and a demand from Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for “immediate action” on the case.
In 2013, 869 Pakistani women are known to have been murdered in so-called “honor killings,” though activists say the real number is likely much higher. Farzana Iqbal’s case represents just one murder among a shockingly large number. Or two murders, perhaps: at the time of the killing, Farzana Iqbal was three months pregnant.