Parwaz , A New Victim of Social Media Misuse

September 4, 2018 at 12:08 pm

Parwaz Hussein, 16

In an exhausting hot day afternoon in one of the narrow alleys of Qaladze the screams of two girls reached for the sky.

Parwaz Hussein, 16 was with her 10 year old sister at home when she took some kerosene to her room and the tragedy happened.

 

In August 23, 2018, the 3rd day of Eid al-Adha, while Parwaz’s family were visiting friends and relatives to greet them on the occasion, she set herself on fire.

Shahen, a friend of the victim who lives in the neighborhood said, “I soon arrived at the scene and the fire had just been put out. Despite her pain and anguish, Parwaz insisted that she would change her burned clothes privately in another room”.

When the neighbors came for help, the fire was already put out, but Parwaz was no longer the same. The smell of her fried body shocked everyone.

After she changed her clothes, one of the neighbors rushed her to Qaladze Hospital and due to the severity of her condition she was later taken to Sulaimaniya, 150 km southeast of the town.

 

According to the medical reports of the  Sulaimaniya Emergency Hospital the burns covered 70% of Parwaz’s body.

Parwaz could not survive and after remaining for 13 hours under intensive care at the emergency hospital, she passed away.

“ before she died she said that she burned herself because a young man threatened to disclose some of her private photos on Facebook unless she goes out with him, therefore she decided to commit suicide”, Shorsh Isma’il, the spokesman for the Raparin police told (Kirkuk Now).

Shahen, one of Parwaz’s close friends, describing her personality says “Parwaz awas a social person and has lots of friends at school. She never said anything about having problems”.

 

Shorsh Isma’il, noted that Raparin police department based on an order from the investigative judge in Pishdar district, arrested the man on the very same day and he is now under investigation.

According to early investigations, the suspect is only 18 years old and he is a 12th grade student.

 

Parwaz’s family told (Kirkuk Now) that they’re awaiting police investigations; however they expressed anger at the spread of their daughter’s photos on social networks and the mixed reactions and comments the case has sparked.

One of Parwaz’s relatives say, “We don’t know that young person who Parwaz mentioned in her confessions”.

Meanwhile the suspect’s family refused to reveal anything about the their son’s case who is now in prison.

Social networks have been often misused in the Kurdistan region and Iraq, victimizing women in the first place.

At the start of this year’s May 12 national elections a sexually revealing video of Intisar Muhammad Jasim, a university of Mustansiriya professor and candidate of al-Nasr coalition for the Iraqi parliament went viral across social networks.

Intisar said the video was “fake” but later she decided to withdraw her candidacy.

 

Another parliamentary candidate was the victim of this misuse. Heshu Rebwar, a KDP candidate was shocked after a private family video showing her half-naked was leaked in social networks. She condemned the act in a press conference calling it “an attempt to undermine women’s personality, especially the candidates”.

 

Rangin Nuri, a social researcher and civil society activist says “social network users should be more careful, especially in regard to the exchange of multimedia contents”

She believes the provision of social researchers and psychologists in schools is crucial to raise young boys’ and girls’ awareness.

Clearly Facebook which has now more than 2 billion users was designed to connect people not separate them as people witnessed in Pawaz’s tragedy.

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