Would women of Aleppo choose death over rape?

Fathers are asking scholars if its permissible to kill their daughters before they are captured by Assad, Hezbollah

Leila Alwan
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Desperate messages are being shared on social media claiming that some fathers in Eastern Aleppo are asking religious scholars whether it is permissible to kill their daughters before they are captured and raped by Assad regime forces, Hezbollah, or Iranian militias.

Syrian regime forces and sectarian militias carried out nearly 200 executions in Aleppo on Monday, which included women and children, according to eyewitnesses from within the city, Al Arabiya News Channel reported.

Activists on the ground say Hezbollah carried out most of the mass executions in the war-torn city. Sources confirmed to Al Arabiya that militias loyal to the regime killed nine children and four women, by burning them to death.

Muhammad Al-Yaqoubi, a prominent Syrian Islamic scholar and religious leader who fled Syria tweeted on Tuesday that he was receiving questions from Aleppo, including whether “a man can kill his wife or sister to avoid rape by Assad regime forces.”

Another Facebook message, posted by a Syrian activist relaying the message from a girl in Aleppo, read:

“To all the religious leaders and scholars of the world. To all those who are supposedly carrying the burden on their shoulder. I am one of Aleppo's girls who awaits rape within a few hours. There are no men nor arms to stand between us and the monster whom are called the Syrian army”.

I don’t want anything from you, not even prayers. I am still able to talk and I believe my prayers are more sincere then yours. All what I am asking for is don’t take God’s place and judge me when I kill myself. I am going to kill myself and I don’t care if you doom me to hell.

I am committing suicide because I didn’t survive all those time in my father’s home for nothing!! My father who died from sorrow and fear for who he left behind. I am committing suicide so my body isn’t any sort of pleasure for those who couldn't even dare to mention Aleppo’s name a few days ago.

“I am committing suicide in Aleppo because the day of judgment just happened and I don't think hell is worse then what we are living.”

“I will kill myself and I know you are going to unite over judging my destiny to hell. I know the only thing that will unite you all is a girl committing suicide. I am not your mom or your sister or wife. I am just a girl you don’t care about.”

“I am going to finish my statement with saying your fatwa doesn’t mean anything to me and doesn’t interest me anymore. Keep it for your family. I am killing myself and when u read this you should know I just died pure and untouched in spite of you all.”

Residents of Aleppo are either being forced to flee to governement held areas, or fearfully await the Syrian army’s arrival.

Al Arabiya cannot confirm or validate the information given.

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