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In some cultures, there is a barbaric practice that continues today. It is known as honor killing. It is the killing of a relative— usually a girl or woman, who is perceived as having brought dishonor to the family.

Author, Dr. Laila Anwarzai Ayoubi joined us Wednesday on “Life.Style.Live!” to discuss her book, “Niki’s Honor.”

“This book is based on true stories, and its message is the need for all people to be kind to their daughters, wives, sisters and to all other girls and women,” said author Laila Anwarzai Ayoubi. 

Published by New York City-based Page Publishing, Laila Anwarzai Ayoubi’s poignant tale is a tragic, yet powerful, story about an innocent victim of “honor killing” practices and the family she seeks to protect. Based on actual events still occurring in many parts of the world, this book reveals the realities of these unspeakable acts committed against girls and women, and usually carried out by a family member. 

In a Soviet-occupied country, Niki, a beautiful young rural Pashtun village girl, becomes entangled in a series of events that brings an end to her fairy tale dreams. She becomes a casualty of a cultural practice where a family’s honor and pride are more precious than life itself. 

Suffering in silence, Niki endures great pain and humiliation, yet she still refuses to reveal her personal secret, saving her family and particularly her mother from further disgrace. She is engaged when she was a little girl to the handsome fifteen-year-old son of a Khan. They eventually fall in love. Her secret is only shared with him. She committed no crime but carries the full weight of a heinous act done by another. 

Ayoubi said the motivation for writing the book came from wanting people to hear her voice to reduce violence against women. 

She’s an Afghanistan native now teaching at both Butler and Martin University.

She is also working as a social worker at Firefly Children, mostly helping Afghan refugee families who recently settled in Indianapolis. 

Previously, she served as a national educational advisor for the United Nations Developmental Program (UNDP) in Afghanistan. Additionally, she served as a diplomat and First Secretary at the Embassy of Afghanistan in Islamabad.