Lamia al-Ghamdi, the five-year-old daughter of a Saudi preacher, was raped repeatedly by her father and ultimately tortured to death. Her injuries included a crushed skull, broken ribs and left arm, extensive bruising and burns. The legal sentence imposed on Fayhan al-Ghamdi for all of this was a fine and a very short stay in prison.
Muslim Pilgrims in Mecca
Photo: Abid Katib/Getty
Fayhan al-Ghamdi confessed to everything, it seems -- including beating his daughter with cables and a cane. According to the hospital, she had been raped "everywhere." It doesn't appear as though Fayhan al-Ghamdi spared even an inch of her body. The government, though, spared him from having to suffer much at all.
Why? Well, the lives of men are worth far more than the lives of women. It looks like this is perfectly consistent with Islamic law: a father can murder his children and husbands can murder their wives without actually being punished for murder. Instead, all they have to do is pay blood money.
Randa al-Kaleeb, a social worker from the hospital where Lama was admitted, said the girl's back was broken and that she had been raped "everywhere", according to the group.
According to the victim's mother, hospital staff told her that her "child's rectum had been torn open and the abuser had attempted to burn it closed."
The activists said that the judge had ruled the prosecution could only seek "blood money (compensation for the next of kin under Islamic law) and the time the defendant had served in prison since Lama's death suffices as punishment."
The ruling is based on Islamic laws that a father cannot be executed for murdering his children, nor can husbands be executed for murdering their wives, activists said.
Source: Ahram Online
It's hard to believe that there is any society in the world today where such behavior would be tolerated to the point that little more than a fine is imposed on the perpetrator. Yet, as already noted, "punishing" this sort of behavior with a fine is not just accepted, but actually codified into religious law.