a blog with cultural bulimia.

Friday, September 26, 2003

Death for Adultery.

Every now and then a case makes its way into the public opinion that hits a note. Public opinion forced the Islamic Tribunal in Nigeria to re-consider the sentence imposed on this woman: she was to be buried alive up to her neck and then stoned to death because she had a baby not being married. Nigeria's population is 130M: 50% are Islamics and the other 50% Christians. Since beginning of 2002 Islamic leaders adopt a strict code to discipline the states where it rules and it has caused the death of at least 5,000 people.

Can it be pressured into changing? This case surely gives hopes.

 Facing Death for Adultery, Nigerian Woman Is Acquitted
from the NYTimes

"Amina Lawal, the Nigerian peasant woman whose case became known worldwide after she was sentenced to death by stoning for adultery, was acquitted today by the highest Islamic court in her state.

A roar of approval swept through the small, sweltering courtroom when a five-member panel of judges ruled 4 to 1 to overturn Ms. Lawal's conviction in a case that had heaped worldwide opprobrium on Nigeria, Africa's most populous country and one in which the split between Muslims and Christians has become increasingly sharp.

Her veiled head bowed, Ms. Lawal sat quietly, holding in her lap what had been cited as the chief evidence of her crime: her daughter, Wasila, now almost 2 years old. Ms. Lawal was to be executed as soon as she had finished weaning the child.

When a judge, Ibrahim Mai-Unguwa, finished his 60-minute recitation of the panel's ruling, Wasila let out an ear-splitting wail, as if to signal her relief.

Later in the day came cries of relief from distant corners of the world. Both Italy and Brazil had offered asylum to Ms. Lawal."