The brother of a a Pakistani fashion model confessed to strangling her to death for posting racy photos on Facebook and posing with a Muslim cleric that “dishonored” his family.
Waseem Azeem confessed in front of the media in Multan to drugging and strangling his sister, 26 year-old Qandeel Baloch to death in the family’s home in the Punjab province after she posted racy and risque pictures on social media. He said that people taunted him over the photos and was embarrassed.
“I was determined either to kill myself or kill her,” Azeem told The Associated Press. He said that he slipped her sedatives the night before and strangled her while she was sleeping.
“I am proud of what I did. I drugged her first, then I killed her,” Waseem Azeem said in his confession video.
“Girls are born to stay home and follow traditions. My sister never did that,” Azeem said.
Multan police chief Akram Azhar said authorities will seek “maximum punishment” of a death sentence for carrying out an “honor killing.” He will be ineligible for a family pardon because of the honor killing.
Islamic law in Pakistan allows a victim’s family to pardon the killer, which allows them to escape punishment in many circumstances.
Baloch, who’s real name was Fauzia Azeem, became famous after several social media postings that were deemed to be racy or scandalous by Pakistani standards, but tame by Western standards. She recently promised to perform a public striptease if the Pakistani cricket team won a major tournament.
A video of her dancing to a popular rap song was widely circulated and has been viewed many times. She had 40,000 Twitter followers and 700,000 followers on Facebook at the time of her death. In her postings, she claimed to represent female empowerment.
The daily newspaper, The Express Tribune reported that Baloch received death threats and requested security from the government following some controversial and racy social media postings.
Recently, Baloch was involved in a public scandal when she posted photos with Muslim cleric, Mufti Adbul Qavi during the holy month of Ramadan. In one of the photos, she is wearing the cleric’s fur-lined hat.
Following the photo, Qavi was suspended by the government and was removed from the official moon-sighting committee that determines when Ramadan starts and ends according to the Islamic lunar calendar. Qavi said that he only met with her to discuss islamic teachings.