American Muslim organization calls verdict in Faleh Almaleki trial severe blow to reform
2nd degree murder conviction lends legitimacy to “Honor Killing” of Noor Almaleki
PHOENIX (February 22, 2011) – Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, a devout Muslim and the president and founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD) issued the following statement regarding the second degree murder conviction in the Honor killing case against Faleh Almaleki:
“Today’s jury verdict of a second degree murder conviction of Faleh Almaleki is a travesty of our American justice system. It was already disappointing that the death penalty had to be off the table in this horrific case where Almaleki’s guilt was less at issue as was his intent. But now to see anything shy of first degree murder is an appalling manifestation of political correctness gone amuck. If there is to be anything to honor the barbaric murder of Noor Almaleki our Maricopa court should have made a an example of Mr. Almaleki and ensured that he received the full brunt of our legal system so that the message is clear that our nation will never countenance in any way shape or form behaviors that lead toward the oppression and ultimately in this case the murder of innocent girls like Noor.
This verdict has struck a severe blow to long overdue efforts toward necessary Islamic reforms against the misogynistic ideologies that manifest in many ways against the rights of women most horrifically in the rare but increasing number of cases of Honor Killings. Almaleki’s case is a clear example of Honor Killing with ample evidence given that Mr. Almaleki knew the consequence and the reason for the murder. This decision to convict on a lesser charge ends up giving some credence to his barbaric actions. It is actually akin to the verdict that is received in some backward Muslim majority countries like Jordan and Pakistan where Honor Killings are given lesser punishments as a result of a shariah based interpretation that such murders are “understandable” and thus deserve lesser punishments.
This decision sends the wrong message not only locally but across the world to those that believe it is all right for men to subjugate and control Muslim women. This jury missed an opportunity to send a very clear message that this behavior is not acceptable within the United States and a women’s individual rights are sacred and cannot be stripped by a father, husband or anyone else because they do not approve of her behavior.
Almalkei deserved the full force of the law for first degree murder and instead will only get the punishment of a second degree murder conviction. American Muslims need to step up for the memory of Noor Almaleki and protest this conviction as weak and declare that these behaviors can never be countenance in any way within our communities and within the Muslim conscience.”
About the American Islamic Forum for Democracy
The American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. AIFD’s mission advocates for the preservation of the founding principles of the United States Constitution, liberty and freedom, through the separation of mosque and state. For more information on AIFD, please visit our website at http://www.aifdemocracy.org/.
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