Girl avoids execution for killing ‘rapist’ husband

Noura Hussein 19 will no longer be executed for killing her rapist husband in self-defence but still faces five years in prison

A lawyer says a Sudanese court has overturned a death sentence against a young woman convicted of killing her husband, who she says was raping her.

As well as the five-year jail term, she was fined 375 Sudanese pounds (about R280), the lawyer, Al-Fateh Hussein, told Reuters.

Her mother, Zainab Ahmed, told the BBC she was happy her daughter's life had been spared.

Her sentencing sparked global outrage, with rights campaigners appealing to President Omar al-Bashir to pardon Hussein, saying she was forced into marriage and acted in self-defence.

The court in Khartoum commuted Noura Hussein's death penalty to five years as well as ordered her to pay blood money to the husband's family.

When she refused to consumate the marriage, her husband on May 2 invited two of his brothers and a male cousin to help him rape her.

When they were alone the next day and he attempted to rape her again, she managed to grab a knife he had used to threaten her and stabbed him to death with it, he said.

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Ms Hussein says she was betrothed to Abdulrahman Mohamed Hammad at the age of 16, but ran away to stay with other relatives to avoid the marriage.

"The jail term is effective from the time she was arrested", he said.

The 19-year-old said her father had made her marry the man, who was also her cousin.

"The Sudanese authorities must take this opportunity to start reforming the laws around child marriage, forced marriage and marital rape, so that victims are not the ones who are penalized", Amnesty said in a statement. Her campaign was tagged "Justice For Noura".

There has been increased protest in recent years against child marriage in Sudan, where legally those over the age of 10 can marry.

Her death sentence triggered a campaign calling for the throwing out of Hussein's sentence, while her lawyer filed an appeal against the lower court's ruling. The law doesn't see that as illegal and neither does it consider marital rape so.

She was to be hanged to death as a punishment.

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