carnegie logo

Babylon & Beyond

Observations from Iraq, Iran,
Israel, the Arab world and beyond

« Previous | Babylon & Beyond Home | Next »

ALGERIA: Alleged rape and slaying of girl during Saudi pilgrimage sparks outrage

Picture 10New developments in the mysterious death and alleged rape of a 15-year-old Algerian-French girl in Saudi Arabia's holiest city are unlikely to quell outrage among Algerians who are already suspicious of police handling of the case.

In an odd piece published Sunday, the Saudi English-language newspaper Arab News quoted a forensic report concluding that Sara Khatib was not raped before she fell to her death from the 16th floor of her hotel in Mecca where she was staying with her family while performing the Umrah pilgrimage.

Arab News went on to quote an unnamed source quoting the girl's stepfather as saying Khatib went up to the roof of the hotel unattended with a Yemeni worker, which was "her mistake and she got her punishment."

Khatib's body was found early last Wednesday on the roof of a neighboring hotel, and early press reports suggested Khatib was either raped and then pushed or jumped to escape being raped. Four expatriates of Yemeni and Bangladeshi origin are reportedly being questioned in connection with her death.

News of the girl's death immediately sparked angry protests by Algerian Muslim pilgrims who shut down the main road near the hotel and demanded to see the Algerian ambassador. The Algerian newspaper Echorouk had previously questioned Saudi authorities' response, pointing out that they had begun denying the girl had been raped just a few hours after the crime but before a proper investigation had been carried out.

Echorouk also attacked the Saudi press for focusing on a possible romantic relationship between the girl and one of the Yemeni suspects. The paper went on to quote Khatib's biological father accusing the Saudi press of destroying her reputation in order to save face for Saudi Arabia. He also called her stepfather a "good man" who "knows how to look after his daughter."

Saudi Arabia has been criticized in the past for how it prosecutes sexual assault. In 2007 and again in 2009, victims of rape were sentenced to jail time and lashes for illicit contact with men.

-- Meris Lutz in Beirut

Photo: Saudi police attend to the body of 15-year-old Sara Khatib. Credit: Echorouk.

Comments () | Archives (15)

C'Est Une Affaire triste .
Je comprends Pas trop de raisins les acte.Est CET C'EST OU suicide non meurtre non ?
What is the DANS vérité Tout ça ?

I'm Saudi Arabian and I feel embarresed for what happed to Sarah in the Holiest City Mecca. I feel sorry for her parents even her stepfather and I wish the mercy for her from Allah. I would like to encourege the Algerians not to stop fighting for their daughter's case and I wish they find the criminals the animals because who do such thing like that is not human. FOR Saudi Police please do the best you could and do NOT foget that it might happen in the future for your DAUGHTER.

Abdulaziz from Saudi Arabia

"So according to the American media two kinds of people can get away with rape: muslims and famous Jewish film directors."
Funny how these Semite tribes can get away with it and me and you end up paying billions bucks to them with our taxes for behaving themselves!

rap9xxx said:

"So according to the American media two kinds of people can get away with rape: muslims and famous Jewish film directors."


Here's the author of virtually the entire Saudi educational curriculum, Sheik al Fawzan, as recorded by SIA:

"Slavery is part of jihad, and jihad will remain as long there is Islam."

Here's a transcript from a recorded sermon by the leading expert on islamic law in Australia, Sheik Al Hilaly:

"If you take out uncovered meat and place it outside on the street, or in the garden or in the park, or in the backyard without a cover, and the cats come and eat it ... whose fault is it, the cats or the uncovered meat?" the sheik said in his sermon. "The uncovered meat is the problem. If she was in her room, in her home, in her hijab, no problem would have occurred."

This sermon was offered in response to the arrest of a group of muslim boys who were raping unveiled Australian women who were apparently permitted to leave their houses without their mahrams (a most unwise choice - at least when Sheik Hilaly's followers are in the vacinity).

So according to the American media two kinds of people can get away with rape: muslims and famous Jewish film directors.

1) Don't go to a muslim country
2) Thank heaven you were born an American.

Maybe she was lucky was pushed off the the building, she didn't have to be buried in a hole and stoned to death for committing adultery.
Get the US out of everywhere now.

Verballistic said:

"true Muslims" would never do such a heinous, barbaric thing"

Think again. The sexual enslavement of unsubmitting infidel women as the "fruits of jihad" is entirely permissible in islam - and not just in the hadith. It's actually Quranically sanctioned, which is really saying something. In fact, there's a name for such women in the Quran: "right-hand-possessions." The mass infidel enslavements by the arab islamist government of Sudan offer a recent example. It's a very small walk from that sanction, to treating all non-muslim women in a sexually predatory manner. Furthermore, muslimas who are considered unislamic or unsubmitting, either by their dress or conduct, are usually not afforded the protection of the law, for the exact same reasons. Therein lies the explanation for the step-father's statement that the rape was "her mistake [i.e. she behaved uninslamically, like an infidel woman] and she got her punishment."

What happens under sharia law when the 4 witnesses to rape ARE the rapists?

Under Islamic law, rape can only be proven if the rapist confesses or if there are four male witnesses. Women who allege rape, without the benefit of the act having been witnessed by four men who subsequently develop a conscience, are actually confessing to having sex. If they or the accused happens to be married, then it is considered to be adultery.
- Establishes that a woman's testimony is worth only half that of a man's in court (there is no "he said/she said" gridlock in Islam).
- "And those who accuse free women then do not bring four witnesses (to adultery), flog them..."
- "Why did they not bring four witnesses of it? But as they have not brought witnesses they are liars before Allah."
- The background for the Qur'anic requirement of four witnesses to adultery. Muhammad's favorite wife, Aisha, was accused of cheating [on her polygamous husband]. Three witnesses corroborated the event, but Muhammad did not want to believe it, and so established the arbitrary rule that four witnesses are required.

Rape is virtually impossible to prove under Islamic law (Sharia) and even in more moderate countries. If the man claims that the act was consensual sex, there is very little that the woman can do to refute this. Islam places the burden of avoiding sexual encounters of any sort on the woman.

This is basic Shariah... I suggest you non-muslims better smarten up...

Here's another link that will blow your mind and make you ask "What Golden Age?"

Sarah Shroud , please investigate.

Whatever. Let Saudi Arabia and Algeria hash this one out. We have enough problems of our own to focus on. This is none of our business.

After reading the article and the numerous hyperlinks (thanks to Ms Lutz for that) I can only say I am saddened but NOT surprised. Fundamentalist Islam has a horrendous RECENT track record when it comes to tolerating abuse, oppression & brutalizing of its OWN women, far more than any other current global belief system.

I thought "infidels" were not permitted to even set foot in the "holy city" of Mecca, but something is amiss here, since "true Muslims" would never do such a heinous, barbaric thing.

The "bright side" is that at least it wasnt an "honor killing" perpetrated by one the girl's male relatives, as punishment for her being "un-Islamic". But the stepfather's astounding statement that the teenage girl "got the punishment she deserved" is way over-the-top.

Much respect to reporter Meris Lutz for covering this often overlooked increasing number of women are letting their voices be heard in showing "solidarity" with their less-fortunate "sisters" in Islamic countries.

Any woman who could possibly justify or even willingly IGNORE such barbarity is no less than a traitor to their own GENDER.


Saudi justice needs to be... well... what do you call it when you start again from scratch?


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...

Recent News
Introducing World Now |  September 23, 2011, 8:48 am »



About the Contributors