Italy: Moroccan man accused of 'honour killing'

Rome, 16 Sept. (AKI) - A Moroccan man is facing murder charges after allegedly stabbing his 18-year-old daughter to death for falling in love with an older man in a small northern Italian town. Sanaa Dafani was stabbed in the throat while she was sitting in a car with her 31-year-old boyfriend in Montereale Valcellina, northwest of Trieste, late Tuesday.

Her father, El Ketawi Dafani was later detained by police and interrogated overnight. Some Italian news reports said he had made some admissions about being present at the scene of the alleged crime but had also contradicted himself in relation to the evidence.

There is also widespread speculation that El Ketawi Dafani, believed to be a Muslim, objected to religious differences between his daughter and her boyfriend and their plans to live together.

According to media reports, the victim's father blocked the car and threatened his daughter. Her boyfriend Massimo De Biasio tried to protect her from the attack and was injured in an alleged assault from the father.

De Biasio raised the alarm and was then taken to a local hospital in Pordenone where he underwent surgery for minor injuries to his abdomen and his hands.

Meanwhile, investigators have begun searching the forest near the scene of the crime in search of the murder weapon.

Police said locating the weapon was a crucial element in their investigation because it would help to confirm several key elements in helping to reconstruct the crime.

The case has already drawn comparisons with the controversial murder of a young Pakistani girl, Hina Saleem, who was killed by male relatives in August 2006.

Hina's father Mohammed, confessed to slitting 20-year-old Hina's throat for 'dishonouring the family' because she lived with an Italian man, wore jeans and worked in a pizzeria.

After the case, the previous centre-left Italian government issued a 'charter of values' for immigrants.

Mohammed and two male relatives were each sentenced last year to 30 years in jail for Hina's murder.


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