Afghan man travels 4,500 km to kill estranged wife in Istanbul

Afghan man travels 4,500 km to kill estranged wife in Istanbul

Ayşegül Usta - ISTANBUL
Afghan man travels 4,500 km to kill estranged wife in Istanbul

A man from Afghanistan traveled some 4,500 kilometers illegally from his home country to Turkey and killed his estranged wife in 2018.

Elhan Atifi married Muhammedullah Raihan in 2015. However, she was subjected to domestic violence for two years and sought help from Afghan officials to no vail.

As her efforts with local police yielded no results, Atifi left home and Afghanistan in 2017 to join her mother living in Vienna. On her way to Austria, she stopped in Turkey.

Atifi rented a house in Istanbul’s Sultangazi district and started to work. Raihan traced her location on social media. He tried to travel to Turkey via Iran.

When his attempt failed, Raihan took a 4,500-kilometer-long journey to find Atifi. He illegally crossed the Iranian and Turkish borders and finally reached Istanbul.

He contacted his estranged wife to convince her to reunite. Atifi finally gave in and told him where she lived on the night of Jan. 16, 2018.

The next day Raihan hit her in the head with an iron bar and strangled her with a cord.

Raihan contacted the smugglers who helped him come to Turkey. He was arrested while preparing to cross the Iranian border.

A lawsuit was opened against him, with prosecutors seeking aggravated life sentence for the Afghan man.

In the first hearing of the trial, Raihan said that Atifi’s leaving him was an embarrassment for him.

He was angry when he found that she had a boyfriend, Raihan told the court, claiming that she attacked him.

“I pushed her when she attacked me and she bumped her head onto the stove. I strangled her with a cord when she started to scream. I left the house when she passed out,” he said.

The court postponed the trial to a later date.

femicide, violence against women,