Two Gazan mothers suspected of killing illegitimate babies

Feeling that police can't protect citizens may explain women's actions, residents say.

muslim women 298 88 (photo credit: AP [file])
muslim women 298 88
(photo credit: AP [file])
Two mothers were arrested by Palestinian Authority police for alleged infanticide in the Gaza Strip earlier this week. Both incidents took place in the southern Strip - one in Rafah and one in Khan Yunis - and in both cases the babies were born out of wedlock. In the Khan Yunis case, the mother allegedly covered the mouth of the newborn baby, born in her father's home, to stop it from screaming, thus killing her. She then supposedly took the body to her father, who tried to bury it. Both were arrested. In Rafah, the baby's body was found on the street. Lawlessness in the Gaza Strip has created a severe lack of confidence between the police and citizens who, in general, assume they cannot be protected by the police, something residents say helps explain the women's actions. Recently, a new organization calling itself The Swords of Truth has claimed it has a list of women who have been acting "immorally." The unknown group said it will punish them unless they change their ways. It has also threatened Internet cafes in the Strip.