Jordan is set to open a shelter for women at risk of falling victim to family-linked “honour crimes” by the end of the year.
Hopefully by the end of the year, a building will be designated and will begin operation,” said Mohammad Ensour, the director of the Human Rights and Family Affairs Department at the Ministry of Justice, speaking on Saturday.
Around 20 women are murdered annually in Jordan for reasons related to "family honour", with rights groups including Human Rights Watch expressing outrage at its continued prominence.
Currently, three centres exist in the Kingdom to house women and children affected by such family-related crimes under the auspices of the Family Reconciliation Centre established by Queen Rania in 2007.
Rights groups have pointed out that in Jordan “protective custody” units in which women who are at risk of honour crimes are sometimes placed by authorities are often tantamount to prisons with attendees unable to leave without the administrators permission and reports that some individuals have stated for periods of up to 10 years.
In the past, cases have also emerged of women being bailed out by male relatives only to then be killed in retributive “honour” attacks.
“We realise that these women deserve a better place to stay in than prison, and that is why we are opening a shelter for them that will house a maximum of 50 women,” Ensour told The Jordan Times.
Police are set to maintain a presence at the new facility, which will provide social, and psychological support to patients in addition to leisure actives and forms of entertainment.
Women with criminal records are set to be excluded from the facility.