Australian priest blames victim for her murder


Jill Meagher, who was murdered in Melbourne. Photograph: Facebook/PR Image/AAP

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Jill Meagher‘s family criticise Catholic priest over ‘disgusting’ claim

Priest reportedly told students at a Melbourne primary school that if Meagher had been more ‘faith filled’ she would have been home and ‘not walking down Sydney Road at 3am’

This victim blaming is even worse for being part of a sermon to primary school children.

Merran Hitchick

Sunday 29 March 2015 06.36 BST

A Catholic priest in Melbourne has reportedly been criticised for a speech in which he said Jill Meagher would have been at home instead of out on the night she was raped and killed if she was more “faith filled”.

Meagher was murdered by Adrian Bayley after a night out Melbourne in September 2012. He was sentenced to life in prison.

The priest delivered his homily at an end-of-term service for a Catholic primary school in Melbourne on Friday and radio station 3AW reported he held up a newspaper article with a picture of Bayley on it to make his point. The report says he told a crowd of about 100 that if Meagher had been more “faith filled” she would have been home and “not walking down Sydney Road at 3am”.

Meagher’s family were outraged by the report and said it was a “stupid thing to say”.

“Adrian Bayley was out there that night looking for a victim and found her,” Joan Meagher, Jill Meagher’s mother-in-law told the Irish Independent. “He was looking for anyone, it didn’t matter to him who the person was.

Thomas Meagher, Jill’s husband, put a statement on Facebook calling the comments “disgusting”.

“What a truly abhorrent lesson to teach a child,” he wrote. “How a human being with such dangerous and misogynistic views can be allowed pass those messages onto children is depressing. Shameful.”

The Catholic Church has apologised for the comments, the Age reports, with one official saying the church did not support the “totally inappropriate” and offensive” comments.

Monsignor Greg Bennett, vicar-general of the archdiocese of Melbourne, went on radio to apologise.

“I’ve spoken with the priest; he acknowledges that the homily wasn’t appropriate and apologises for the offence and upset it has caused,” he told 3AW.

“The reference to Jill Meagher in particular was offensive and inappropriate and the people of Victoria and Ireland mourn her sad and tragic death.

Turkish women demonstrate against rape, murder


This video from Turkey says about itself:

14 February 2015

Women in Turkey have raised reactions to the savage murder of Özgecan Aslan.

On Feb 11th, Ozgecan Aslan (20) university student, caught a bus from Adana to Mersin as was her routine from school to home. As the last passenger gets off the bus, she’s left alone with the driver, his father and his friend. Two days later, three suspects were captured and Özgecan’s body was found. Initial autopsy report shows young woman was stabbed to death after she was raped, and then her body was burnt.

Aktivist Kamera 14.02.2015 Kadıköy / İstanbul

Twenty-year-old Özgecan Aslan was a psychology student at Çağ University in Mersin. DHA Photo

From Doğan News Agency in Turkey:

20-year-old Turkish woman brutally murdered, body burned

The burned body of a 20-year-old female student who had been missing for two days was discovered Feb. 13 in a riverbed in the Tarsus district of the southern province of Mersin.

Three suspects have been detained for stabbing Özgecan Aslan to death and later burning her remains.

The family of Aslan, who was a psychology student at Çağ University, had filed a missing report with the police on Feb. 11 after failing to contact her. As the search for the missing girl continued, gendarmerie forces stopped a suspicious minibus on Feb. 12, discovering blood stains and a hat in the minibus.

The driver of the vehicle, 26-year-old S.A., his 50-year-old father, N.A., and 20-year-old F.G. were detained when the victim’s father recognized the hat and said it belonged to his daughter.

During the interrogation, N.A. and F.G. admitted to the crime. According to the suspects’ testimonies, after all other passengers disembarked from the minibus, S.A. exited the scheduled route in spite of Aslan’s protestations and drove to a secluded spot.

When he attempted to rape the woman, she fought back and used pepper spray against her attacker. S.A. then stabbed Aslan several times and hit her with an iron pipe, killing her.

He also allegedly cut off Aslan’s fingers in an effort to ensure that no DNA match would be made with the scratches the woman made on his face during the struggle.

After the murder, S.A. went back home with the body and asked for his father and friend’s help in disposing of the remains. The three then tried to burn Aslan’s body to eliminate any evidence.

The remains of a woman were found Feb. 13 at a location indicated by the suspects. One of Aslan’s close friends, who was with her on the day she went missing, failed to identify the severely damaged body, but she said the clothes on the body matched what Aslan wore the day she disappeared.

“We were together at the school until noon, then we went shopping, ate something and got on a minibus to go home,” the witness said. “I got off near my home and she stayed on the minibus to go home. I later learned that she did not go home and was missing.”

The gendarmerie and the police have launched an investigation to find out the details and the reasons for the murder.

February/14/2015

Women carry the coffin of Özgecan Aslan, who was killed during a rape attempt

From Doğan News Agency in Turkey:

Women defy imam in murdered woman’s funeral, carry the coffin

Thousands bid farewell on Feb. 14 to Özgecan Aslan, a 20-year-old woman who was murdered during a rape attempt, in a funeral ceremony held in her hometown Mersin.

Although the imam requested women to step back during the ceremony, hundreds of women attended the funeral prayer on the front lines, while they also carried he coffin of Aslan before and after the prayer. …

Songül Aslan, mother of Özgecan, was devastated. …

“Özgecan had a wonderful heart, she would work hard, help everyone. I cannot accept that she was massacred when she took a minibus to come home. Is my daughter’s only mistake is to get on a minibus to come home?” she added. …

Protests have been held across the country to protest the brutal murder, with the demonstrators carrying photographs of Aslan and other female victims of violence.

February/14/2015

See also here.

From Revolution News:

Turkey: Outrage over Horrific Rape and Murder of Student Ozgecan Aslan

02/14/2015

On Feb 11th, Ozgecan Aslan, a 20-year-old university student, caught a bus from Adana to Mersin as was her routine from school to home. As the last passenger gets off the bus, she’s left alone with the driver, his father and his friend. Two days later, three suspects were captured and Özgecan’s body was found. Initial autopsy report shows young woman was stabbed to death after she was raped, and then her body was burnt.

Women all over Turkey are organizing protests today, claiming this is not “just another criminal incident”, but a result of a systematic misogynist state policy. Recent declarations by government officials against women’s employment, abortion, and similar statements to restrict women’s rights including even “when to go out and what to wear” have been responded to with public outrage. Also, perpetrators of rape and murder of women get the minimum sentence due to “incitement” or “consent” by the victim or “no psychological damage observed” on the victim. The extent of femicide in Turkey has once again been revealed by the murder of Ozgecan Aslan, while according to official figures murders of women have increased 1,400% during the period of AKP rule.

Turkish women demonstrate against the murder of Ozgecan Aslan

FIVE Turkish MPs were injured yesterday in a brawl that broke out in parliament. The fight started after opposition parties submitted motions to hamper the passage of a draconian new Bill restricting the right to protest: here.

Indian politicians condone rape


This video from India says about itself:

‘Nobody commits rape deliberately’, says Chhattisgarh Home Minister

7 June 2014

After the brutal rape and murder of two cousins in Uttar Pradesh’s Badaun sparked a nationwide outrage, Chhattisgarh Home Minister Ramsevak Paikra has landed himself into controversy by saying that rape happens “by mistake”.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Indian minister makes rape apologist comments

Sunday 8th June 2014

ANOTHER minister from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling BJP party attempted to excuse rape at the weekend.

Just days ago, Madhya Pradesh state BJP Home Minister Babulal Gaur said rapes were “sometimes right, sometimes wrong.”

And late on Saturday, Chhattisgarh state Home Minister Ramsevak Paikra, who is responsible for law and order, said that rapes did not happen on purpose.

“Such incidents do not happen deliberately. These kind of incidents happen accidentally,” Mr Paikra told reporters.

Mr Paikra, who had been asked for his thoughts on the gang-rape and lynching of two girls in a neighbouring state, later claimed that he had been misquoted.

However, his original remarks were broadcast on television.

Women’s groups slammed the comments, saying they were evidence that politicians were unable to stem sexual violence because they lacked respect for India’s women and were ignorant of the issues.

See also here.

Rape summit in London sparks charge of ‘hypocrisy’. [British] Government under attack for hosting Global Summit to End Sexual Violence event while women asylum seekers suffer: here.