Home Morocco Rape Victim Khadija Encourages Girls to Speak Out

Rape Victim Khadija Encourages Girls to Speak Out

Rape Victim Khadija Encourages Girls to Speak Out
Photo Credit: AFP

Rabat – Khadija, the 17-year-old girl who said she was kidnapped and raped for two months, acknowledged that opening up about her tragedy “was difficult.”

Khadija’s rape story has made headlines in Morocco and across the world since August.

A dozen people, minors and adults, allegedly kidnapped and repeatedly raped her for almost two months in Beni Mellal, central Morocco, about 300 kilometers from Rabat.

The suspects also tattooed her body. In a new interview with AFP, Khadija said that speaking about the incident has been difficult since she decided to file a complaint.

“But I am ready to endure it.”

Read Also: Khadija’s Parents Hire Lawyer to Defend Her Story

She called on all girls who have suffered similar ordeals to be brave and speak out.

She added that she cannot wait to start treatment to remove the tattoos. “I cannot even look at my hands, because I remember every day what happened to me,” she said.

Khadija’s father, Mohamed, told AFP that his daughter was “brave” despite her situation.

Police arrested twelve suspects aged between 17 and 28 in Khadija’s case. The suspects are facing charges of human trafficking of a minor, rape, torture and threatening death.

Prosecutors have charged some suspects with kidnapping, imprisoning, not assisting a victim in danger, and forming an organized gang.

According to AFP,  several suspects confessed in their statements.

Read Also: Tattoo Specialist Questions Khadija’s Story of Involuntary Tattoos

Khadija’s father said that living in their small village of Oulad Ayad in Beni Mellal has become difficult. The family has received threats and insults by phone.

In August, several suspects’ parents questioned  Khadija’s allegations.

The parents claimed that Khadija has a bad reputation in the town. They said she used to “drink, smoke and even burn herself with cigarettes.”

A mother of two of the suspects said that Khadija asked “for the tattoos and they were not forced on her by anyone.”

The suspects’ mother added that she would defend Khadija herself if she were really a victim as she claims.

“She wanted this, she was always knocking on my door asking if my son was home,” the mother told Moroccan television channel Soltana.

Another parent claimed that if what Khadija charged of his son were true, Khadija’s father would have filed a complaint about his daughter’s absence.

Social media users launched a petition in August asking King Mohammed VI and public authorities to restore Khadija’s dignity by giving her justice.

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