Sudanese teenager on death row for killing her husband, 35, speaks

Sudanese teenager on death row for killing her husband, 35, after he raped her recalls horrific moment his family helped tear off her clothes, slap her and hold her down

  • Noura Hussein, 19, from Sudan, was forced to marry her much older cousin
  • When she refused sex, she says her husband got his family to help him rape her
  • She reveals how his family tore her clothes off and held her down on a bed
  • When he tried to rape her again the next day, she stabbed him in self-defence
  • Miss Hussein has appealed her death sentence and is awaiting a retrial 

A Sudanese teenager sentenced to death for killing her husband after he allegedly raped her, has spoken about her horrific ordeal for the first time.

Noura Hussein, 19, was forced to marry her cousin, and when she refused to consummate the marriage, she says he called his family to help him rape her.

Miss Hussein claims her husband’s family tore her clothes off and held her down while her the 35-year-old brutally raped her.

When her husband tried to force himself on her again the following day, she says she managed to get hold of a knife and stabbed him to death in self-defence. 

Attacked: Noura Hussein, 19, seen with her husband, 35, at their wedding, says she was held down by members of his family while he raped her, and that she stabbed him in self-defence

Miss Hussein had been promised to her husband at 15, and despite repeated protests they married after she left school at 18.

She told CNN how she thought about taking her own life while getting ready for the ceremony and cried sitting next to him.

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Nine days later, after continuously refusing to have sex with her husband, Miss Hussein said his relatives came over and she was ordered into the bedroom.

‘I said no, so his uncle dragged me by my arm into the bedroom and his cousin slapped me,’ she told CNN. 

‘All of them tore at my clothing. His uncle held me down by my legs and each of the other two held down my arms. He stripped and had me while I wept and screamed.’

The case gained widespread attention on social media under the hashtag #JusticeForNoura. An online petition has been started to protest against the court ruling

She said that when the rape was over, they all exited the room, leaving her naked and bleeding on the bed. 

Miss Hussein said her husband then attacked her again the following day.

‘He threw me on the bed and tried to climb on top of me. I was fighting back and my hand found a knife under the pillow.’

As the pair fought over the knife, she stabbed him, and after realising that she had killed him, she ran home to her family.

She had been hoping for support and protection from her parents, but they handed her over to police. 

Sudanese law allows children to be married from the age of ten, and marital rape is not a crime.

Miss Hussein is currently awaiting a retrial after appealing her death sentence last month. 

Her death sentence triggered international outrage and condemnation from the United Nations and global rights groups. 

Activists have launched a campaign called ‘Justice For Noura’, with many changing their profile pictures on Twitter and Facebook to a painting depicting a white veil and clenched fists.  

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