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Fatah official condemns honor killings, violence against Palestinian women

Op-ed by Muwaffaq Matar, Fatah Revolutionary Committee member and regular columnist for the official PA daily, calling for change in Palestinian society's attitude towards women and violence against women.

Headline: "Murder for [family] honor - terror and racism"
      "All people are born free, with equal rights and value. Every person has the right to realize his freedom without discrimination on the basis of gender. Equality between men and women in all political, civil, financial, social, and cultural rights is a set goal.
Discrimination against women constitutes a violation of the principles of human rights...
If we wish to liberate our society from the octopus grip of this crime (i.e., honor killings), we must purify our outlook, our books, and our heritage from the sanctification of killing for God and honor and from the glorification of weapons...
Our [Arab and Islamic] societies consider crimes of violence against women and murder for honor and revenge as legitimate acts... and there are those who have exaggerated by glorifying them as heroic masculine acts, so much so that they have become one of the cultural foundations of the Arab and Islamic societies.
We need a fundamental change, secure laws, clarity, honesty, and enlightened attitudes from religious figures, jurists, and politicians... and above all, we need a revolution in education."
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