Somalia’s Shabaab stone woman to death for marrying 11 men

Mogadishu – Shabaab militants stoned a Somali woman to death on Wednesday after an Islamic court sentenced her to the punishment for having married 11 men, the Al-Qaeda-linked group and witnesses said.

The witnesses said the woman was publicly executed in the Sablaale district of the lower Shabelle region, about 250 kilometres (155 miles) from Mogadishu. This area is known as on of the Islamist group territory.

A statement from pro- Shabaab said, “The judge… said that the woman has confessed to the charges against her, that she married 11 husbands at the same time. ”

According to the AFP report, witnesses declined to be named, they said a dozen hooded Shabaab fighters were involved in the stoning.

The Shabaab statement said the woman was a 30-year-old mother of eight, she was arrested after two men argued over her, each claiming to be her legal husband. She was later arrested, since the arrest a number of men have come forward claiming she is married to them too.

The statement added, “One of the husbands died and another divorced her, but nine others were still married to her.”

Witnesses said the woman married the men secretly and that none of them were aware of her of her previous marriages.

However in Somali a man can marry up to four wives, and it is known sometimes he marries secretly to hide a union from one of his other wives, this is less common amongst women.

It sometimes does occur a woman takes a second husband without an official divorce, usually for economic reasons.

Al Shabaab was pushed out by soldiers from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) from the Somalian capital in 2011, this led to be pushed out in many other cities and towns.

But the Islamist group still hold sway in large parts of the countryside where they often carry out stonings for adultery.

Photo Credit- Farah Abdi Warsameh

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