Souad, between Murder and Mercy

"I had no intention of killing my husband, I only wanted to protect my daughter." In 2019, Souad was sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering her husband. He was abusing her and their four children, but self-defence was not accepted in her case. We tell Souad’s story based on a letter she wrote from prison. and the testimonies of her children.
14 February 2022
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"لم تكن لدي نية لقتل زوجي، أردت فقط حماية ابنتي". في عام 2019، حُكم على سعاد بالسجن المؤبّد من أجل قتل زوجها الذي دأب على الاعتداء عليها وعلى أطفالهما الأربعة طيلة سنوات، ورفضت المحكمة في إطار القضية حجة الدفاع الشرعي عن النفس. تروي هذه الحلقة قصتها على لسان أطفالها ومن خلال مقتطفات من رسالة كتبتها سعاد في غياهب السجن.
Created by
Noujoud Rejbi
Mixing - Sound Design - Music
Oussema Gaidi
Editorial Support
Rym Amami
Tayma Ben Ahmed
Sahar Beljadj Hassine
Editing of the English Version
Yasmine Perkins

In this episode, we unravel Souad's story through the testimonies of herself and her children, and the analyses of psychologist Sondes Garbouj and lawyer Adnen Labidi. A victim of domestic violence, who killed her husband.

According to Sondes Garbouj, who relies on French and Canadian statistics, " half of the women who commit conjugal homicide are victims of conjugal violence". This was the case for Souad, who was physically, sexually, verbally and economically abused by her husband. Her husband also abused their four children; her eldest son losing function of his left ear due to his father violently hitting him when he was a child. 

Souad tried to file a complaint and start divorce proceedings on several occasions. However, the police officers did not take her complaints seriously, and her family did not support her in her attempts to divorce and leave him. 

" I know my mother is a victim. She became a victim of injustice when she only wanted to defend herself and her children." Souad was sentenced to life imprisonment at both first and second instance.

The aim of this episode is in no way to defend or legitimise what Souad did, but rather to analyse and understand it, in order to prevent similar cases in the future.

* The voices and first names of the children have been changed in order to respect anonymity. 

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Inkyfada Podcast is the first platform entirely dedicated to original Tunisian podcasts, and was conceived by Inkyfada media in collaboration with the in-house research and development laboratory, InkyLab.
Inkyfada joined the global podcast boom in 2017, when the team produced the first Tunisian audio documentary, diving deep into the belly of the El Kamour struggle taking place in the desert.
Since then, Inkyfada Podcast has produced a wide variety of documentaries, investigations, and podcast series, as well as articles accompanied by music; covering a multitude of contemporary issues in order to offer an immersive and alternative podcast experience.
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