Pakistani social media star Qandeel Baloch was strangled to death over the weekend, with her brother confessing to the murder as an ‘honour killing’.
She was strangled in her sleep in her family home in Punjab, Pakistan by her brother, Wasim Azeem, in protest to the “kind of pictures she had been posting online.”
Qandeel’s father, Muhammad Azeem, reported the death to police, and after going on the run, her brother was caught. He then confessed to the murder.
Her videos and pictures aren’t all that different to what other 20-something women are posting.
With 750,000 followers on Facebook, she called herself a “modern day feminist” and was recently writing posts about challenging old practices of Pakistani society.
She was praised for empowering women in a country where gender disparity is outrageously high.
Her brother told police that her videos were “objectionable” and “intolerable” and that he had no regrets over killing her.
At a press conference, he said: “Yes of course, I strangled her. I am not ashamed. We are Baloch and as Baloch we cannot tolerate this.
“Money matters, but family honour is more important.
“I was determined either to kill myself or kill her.
“I am not embarrassed at all over what I did. Whatever was the case, it [Qandeel's actions] was completely intolerable.”
He then confessed to how he killed her.
“She was on the ground floor while our parents were asleep on the rooftop.
“It was around 10.45pm when I gave her a tablet ... and then killed her.”
His father has told press he believes Wasim killed her under the guidance of his older brother Aslam Shaheen. Both have now been charged with murder.
While local police have said they’d be seeking ‘maximum punishment’, an ‘honour killing’ means that the incident can be tried as a private offence. This could lead to the accused being let off as a pardon by the victim’s family.