Being Pakistani, I have basically grown up hearing about honour killings and our countries failed attempts to condemn them. Growing up I would go visit family friend’s of mine who lived in Northern Pakistan and then all of a sudden the trips became less and less frequent. I had grown to be best friends with the girl who was 2 years older than me and her brother only 6 months younger than me. Her mom had been my mom’s best friend since university and both our parents were best friends. While living in Northern Pakistan which is much more conservative than the already conservative Pakistan, my family friend’s cook and maid began having an affair and were ready to run away together when the maid’s family found out and came to my family friend’s house ready to kill the girl.
My friend’s dad at this point tried protecting his maid and stood up to her family when he got struck by an axe. The blow of the axe was meant for the girl who went to my friend’s dad for protection and he ended up paying for the protection with his own life. While my family friend’s were able to leave the country for safety reasons most victims of honour killings in Pakistan do not have this opportunity. They are over an estimated 1000 honour killings annually in Pakistan and due to our government’s lack of condemnation it is slowly becoming a cultural norm. Leaving women in lower class families no choice but to stay within their communities where the abusers go without getting punished. In order for honour killings to stop becoming a cultural norm in Pakistan the government has to take steps towards condemning these actions and punishing the abusers.