Asmahan Farih, 33, accuses her husband who is her cousin at the same time and her brother of burning her son as a pressure card to give up her share in inheritance while the case has not yet been ruled at court.
Omer, 11, was hospitalized last June in Kirkuk for serious burns, few days later he passed away in the intensive care unit ICU.
“The kids were at their father’s. They called me and said Omer was burnt by hot water spill. Later they said it was electric shock. Each time a story,” Farih said. Omer passed away on June 3rd. He had three sisters and three brothers.
They called me and said Omer was burnt by hot water spill. Later they said it was electric shock.
Asmahan said she was in discord with her husband at that time so the kids were spending some time with their father at their grandfather’s.
Asmahan was married to her cousin in an arranged interfamily marriage. In exchange, the elder brother of Asmahan married a cousin, sister of Asmahan’s husband.
Asmahan says her brother was not satisfied for his marriage so their problems reflected on her marriage as well so her uncle decides the break up while she was pregnant with her last baby.
“My brothers were trying to deprive me of my right in selling my parent’s, about 5-10 M Iraqi Dinars ($3,000-6,000).”
She claims that her brother cooperated with her brother in a plot to accuse her of treason by involving someone to talk to her by SMS and phone calls.
“The person who was calling me said he received $500 to make a relationship with me and put me into trouble. I convinced him to open phone camera and took screenshots. I threatened him to call police if he won’t quit.”
One day her husband tells her why she is taking photos of other men on the phone. “I realized he is involved.”
She accuses her husband and brother of editing video of her to defame her socially. Ahead of death of Omer, she says her husband and brother forced for miscarriage by injection from a midwife when was pregnant but it has not worked.
Following death of her son, she was asked to quit her right in the inherited house and the lawsuit. “They stopped me while heading home from court. They have savagely beaten me and asked me to give up or they will take me to Dubiz and kill me there.”
They stopped me while heading home from court. They have savagely beaten me and asked me to give up or they will take me to Dubiz and kill me there.
Asmahan now takes care of her six children yet have no idea where Omer was laid. Her husband told her he was buried in Dubiz.
She is desperate of her case at court as she thinks influential people support her husband and brother.
KirkukNow has tried to contact the husband yet could not make it.
Asmahan’s case is on f the escalating cases of domestic vilence in Kirkuk. Community police service has registered 130 cases of gender-based violence in the last three months, total 394 in 2020.
The sharp spike in domestic violence cases in Iraq while a draft for combatting domestic violence is at the hands of Iraqi parliament since 2019. The law-to be proposes safe shelters for abused women, special court for gender-based violence and penal codes for perpetrators.
The case of Asmahan is supported by NGOs advocating for women’s rights.
Srood Ahmed, in charge of Kirkuk office for al-Amal Iraqi association, women NGO, said they are concerned about the case and managed to convince court to review the dossier which was suspended earlier.
“Now the cases of inherited property, murder of the boy and delay of the medical report about murder reason are being investigated,” Srood said.
“Senior officials are involved and the route has been shifted to keep the criminals away but we will not retreat and defend the case till the end,” she enthusiastically said.
Up today, no date appointed for the court case and no arrest warrant issued for any suspect. The brother and the husband were called to court.
Lieutenant colonel Ali al-Jibouri, manager of community service police in Kirkuk Police said they support the case. “We helped her to file a lawsuit about the inheritance share, murder of her son and abduction by her brothers.”
According to the information they have, “she was severely tortured to give away the money and took her phone as well,” he added.
While the Kurdistan Region of Iraq has a 2011 law on domestic violence, women have few legal protections to shield them from domestic violence in Baghdad-controlled territory.
Iraq’s criminal code, applicable in both Baghdad-controlled territory and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, criminalizes physical assault but lacks any explicit mention of domestic violence.