Honour-based violence (HBV)

HBV is a type of domestic violence, which is inflicted on the basis of preserving the family/community ‘honour.’

Honour-based violence is that phenomenon where a person (most often a woman) is subjected to violence by her collective family or community in order to restore ‘honour’, presumed to have been lost by her behaviour, most often through expressions of sexual autonomy.

Behaviours that can incite HBV/Honour Killings:

HBV is not restricted to certain groups or societies, but is mostly associated with the Middle East and South Asia. Many ‘honour’ killings have been recorded in Europe and America within diasporic immigrant communities. The first high-profile murder to be recognised as an ‘honour’ killing in Europe was the death of Fadime Sahindal. Honour-based violence is not restricted to a certain country but often traditions and cultures are the strongest factors in HBV and honour killings. In some environments, there are distinct forms of active and passive ‘honour’ which can be mapped onto the expectations of traditional masculine and feminine behaviour, whereby men are supposed to be assertive and respond with violence to slights upon their own, or their families ‘honour’ and women are expected to maintain their own fragile honour through complete conformity to social norms of feminine behaviour.

Honour Killings

An ‘honour’ killing is the most extreme form of HBV where the supposed offender against family ‘honour’ is killed to restore the ‘honour’ which has supposedly been lost through her behaviour.

An ‘honour’ killing is the most extreme form of violence which may be expressed as a final resort; however there are other lesser responses, such as forcing marriage or other forms of violence which may also be expressed

Statistics of HBV:

The United Nations Population Fund reported 5,000 honour killings per year in 2000. However, these figures are disputed and there has not been any subsequent global estimate. Thus the number of ‘honour’ killings, and acts of HBV are currently not known. 

Some reported cases of HBV are:


We are proud to join hands with the team behind Honor Diaries,. It is the first film
 to break the silence on ‘honor violence’ against women and girls. 
Honor Diaries is a movement to save women and girls from human rights abuse around the world and in America.


The India’s Daughter campaign aims to work closely with it’s partners to address the issue of honour violence and killings. Please visit our TAKE ACTION page, JOIN US as a partner and/or DONATE to help put an end to honour based violence.