Abeer Qasim

Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi

Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi (عبير قاسم حمزه الجنابي) (August 19, 1991 - March 12, 2006) was a 14-year-old Iraqi girl who was gang raped and murdered along with her family by U.S. Soldiers.

Background

Abeer Hamza lived with her mother and father (Fakhriya Taha Muhasen, 34, and Qassim Hamza Raheem, 45, respectively) and their 3 other children, 7 year old daughter Hadeel Qassim Hamza, 13 year son Mohammed and his younger brother. Their house was situated approximately 200 metres away from a 6 manned U.S. traffic checkpoint, southwest of the village of Yusufiyah, which lies west of the larger township of Al-Mahmudiyah (in the coalition termed area "Triangle of Death").

According to her neighbours, Abeer spent most of her days at home as her parents would not allow her to go to school following security concerns. The American soldiers would often watch Abeer from their checkpoint, doing her chores and tending the garden. The neighbours had warned Abeer's father of this but he replied it was not a problem as she was just a small girl.

Abeer's brother Mohammed (who survived along with his younger brother, due to being at school at the time of the killings) recalls the soldiers often searched the house. And on one such occasion PFC Steven Dale Green ran his index finger down Abeer's cheek, which had terrified the 14 year old girl.

Abeer's mother told her relatives before the murders, that whenever she caught the soldiers staring at Abeer, they would give her the thumbs-up sign, point to her daughter and say "Very good, very good." Evidently this had concerned her and she made plans for Abeer to spend night times sleeping at her uncle's (Ahmad Qassim) house.

The Mahmudiyah killings

On March 12, 2006 the soldiers (from the 502nd Infantry Regiment) at the checkpoint had been drinking alcohol and discussing plans to rape Abeer. In broad daylight they walked to the house (not wearing their uniforms) and separated Abeer from her family into 2 different rooms. Steven Green then murdered her parents and younger sister, while 2 other soldiers raped her. He then emerged from the room saying "I just killed them, all are dead". He then raped Abeer, shot her in the head and preceded to (along with the other soldiers) set fire to the house and bodies.

The neighbours were amongst the first to discover the scene, one recounts "The poor girl, she was so beautiful she lay there, one leg was stretched and the other was bended and her dress was lifted to her neck.

Age

There have been many inaccurate reports over Abeer's correct age of 14, and her relation to the other victims in the house, especially in the early days of the emergence of the story. One speculative age for Abeer was that she was twenty five years old and that the bodies of father and sister were mistaken as her husband and daughter respectively. On her Iraqi ID card, however, her date of birth is confirmed to be August 19, 1991, making her 14 years old at the time of her death. (See picture above.)

References

See also

External links

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