Wednesday, November 30, 2005

The Death of Samira Munir - Accident, Murder or Suicide?

This is a sensitive topic, but I believe it needs to be talked about. Samira Munir, Norwegian politician of Pakistani origins, died two weeks ago. All the details surrounding her death have not been revealed, but the police have hinted that it may have been suicide. It is not impossible that this could be the case, but she had received death threats many times from the Pakistani community in Norway because of her courageous fight for the rights of Muslim immigrant women, and for banning hijab, the Islamic veil. Regardless of what caused her death, it is a fact that she received far too little support from Norwegian authorities and even her own party, who were afraid that her outspoken defence of women's rights could cost them Muslim votes and damage the country's glossy, Multicultural self-image. Her death thus puts this country to shame. She was a brave woman, and will be missed. May she rest in peace. The following text is not written by me, but by Norwegian Islam-critic Prithivi from Antipsykopatisk Senter, and was posted at the forum of Faith Freedom International:

The Death of Samira Munir - Accident, Murder or Suicide?

Of Pakistani origin, Samira Munir proclaimed herself to be a muslim. She was not, however, your average muslim woman, not by a long shot. For those familiar with Irshad Manji, the Canadian author who wrote the book The Trouble With Islam and runs the website Muslim Refusenik Samira Munir can probably be best described as a Norwegian counterpart or equivalent of Irshad Manji. Samira spoke relentlessly and very courageously for the rights of women in the muslim immigrant community in Norway, how they were faced with threats of forced marriages, so called honour-killings and female sexual mutilation. She also warned Norwegian politicians of dire consequences of their neglect and indifference. As a matter of fact she entered politics herself. she was elected to the municipal assembly in Oslo as a representative for The Conservatives. As one would expect she received no support whatsoever in her struggle for the rights of muslim immigrant women. Quite the contrary, one of her party colleagues, a real muslim, threatened her with a lawsuit for some of her statements. Rumours have it that within the party she was not looked upon favourably at all, they feared that her outspoken critics of muslim leaders may cost them muslim votes. Her proposals to improve the conditions for muslim women in Norway were continuously sabotaged and backstabbed by the rest of the party, including a proposal to copy the French ban on hijab i public schools. She spoke about how muslim girls who in public said they wore hijab of their own free will in private confided in her that they were being forced and threatened to do so, and urged her to carry on being a voice for those who had neither the possibility nor the courage to speak for themselves.

In several interviews she told that she was being harassed and receiving death threats, not only against herself, but also against her family. Then, on November 14, 2005, the website of Human Rights Service brought the shocking news that Samira had died under circumtannces which still seem mysterious, to say the least. The story was that she had been run over by a train at a station on one of the suburban lines in Oslo. For someone who recently had claimed she was receiving almost daily death threats this seemed highly suspicious. It was made even more suspicious by the fact that the PC media in Norway for several days did not mention by a single word what had happened. Earlier the same day as she was killed she had participated in a radio discussion where she defended the ban on hijab in universities in Turkey. After several days the mainstream Norwegian media eventually broke the story, but in a very muted way. Between the lines they kind of suggested that she had taken her own life, and that out of “respect” one should not try and dig deeper into the story. Although the mainstream media hardly reported the case at all there has of course been a lot of discussions about it in Norwegian internet forums. Many seem convinced that she was murdered by some Norwegian muslims who pushed her into the track as a train was passing. Some suggest she was doped and placed on the tracks to await an arriving train. The latter is based on the fact that one report claimed she was killed between two stations, rather than at a particulalar station. Considering all the hatred and all the threats she had received from muslims in Norway that does not seem unlikely, to say the least. The fact that the Pakistani ambassador had summoned her twice may even suggest that the Pakistani ISI (Interservice Intelligence) was involved.

There are many uncertainties about Samira’s tragic death. But even if it was a suicide it does not add up. A healthy 42 year old women, and the mother of two, does not just jump in front of a train for no reason. As a matter of fact there has to be a very good reason. If that is what actually happened we will probably never know the true reason in detail, but a few facts we do know. We know that both she and her family were being harassed and received death threats, and we know she was being very concerned about the development of the muslim immigrant community in Norway, becoming ever more radical and extremist. The pressure against her, and the bleak outlook for the future can surely be enough to drive a person to commit suicide, and the lack of support from within the conservative party most certainly did not make it any better. So even if the final act was one of her own choosing her blood remains on the hands of Norwegian muslims and their islamophile friends in the conservative party.

Oslo politician felt pressured by Pakistan's ambassador

A member of Oslo's City Council who was born in Pakistan but now holds Norwegian citizenship has twice been called to Pakistan's local embassy. Both times, Pakistan's ambassador to Norway questioned her political standpoints, and now Norway's foreign minister Jan Petersen has been told that she felt pressured. The two calls from Pakistan's ambassador to City Council member Samira Munir have raised eyebrows. It's highly unusual for a Norwegian citizen to be asked to meet up in another country's embassy to draft political issues with an ambassador. "It crosses the line, to put it mildly, if pressure is put on our politicians," said the city's top elected politician Erling Lae. "An embassy has nothing to do with what a politician on Oslo's City Council may believe." Lae, Petersen and Munir all hail from Norway's Conservative Party (Hoeyre). Munir has lived in Norway since the early 1970s and has been a Norwegian citizen for more than 20 years. The calls from Pakistan's embassy came after Munir became the first known Muslim woman in Norway to support a proposed ban on the use of head scarves and other religious symbols for youth. She then became a target of criticism within the local Pakistani community. She declined to comment on the issue after receiving several anonymous and bothersome phone calls. Newspaper Aftenposten Aften understands that Pakistan's ambassador, Shahbaz Shahbaz, noted in his second meeting with Munir that she still has family in Pakistan. Shahbaz confirmed he has had two meetings with Munir in his office since she went public with her position on religious head scarves called hijab in February. They had no contact prior to that point.


At November 30, 2005 9:28 PM, Blogger Jude the Obscure said...

'A healthy 42 year old woman, and the mother of two, does not just jump in front of a train for no reason.'
Suicide? Ridiculous.

At November 30, 2005 11:06 PM, Blogger Cosmophant said...

This hurts so much. All this hurts so very much.

Look at the picture of her:

Such a fine woman.

At November 30, 2005 11:16 PM, Blogger kepiblanc said...

This horrible story never made the news in Denmark either. Norway ins't a member of dhimmi-EUrabia, so what went wrong ?

At December 01, 2005 1:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If a country as far advanced as Norway is, sweeps the murder of this woman under the rug--what hope is there?

This is one of your most depressing posts Fjordman.

At December 01, 2005 3:31 AM, Blogger justmom said...

"Between the lines they kind of suggested that she had taken her own life, and that out of “respect” one should not try and dig deeper into the story. "

Is this a veiled threat that any further exploration of the circumstances will be detrimental to her surviving family?

At December 05, 2005 8:05 AM, Blogger Theresa said...

Wow. I am shocked. I am here in Norway and hadn't heard this story at all.... :/


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