EGYPT--Beaten with a slave whip, starved and scared, Kiwi Sharon Churchill believes she would still be a hostage of her Egyptian husband if it wasn't for a team of New Zealand diplomats who helped her to escape.
The 41-year-old from Tirau in Waikato suffered emotional abuse and beatings from her husband of five months - a man she once called the love of her life - and started sleeping with a steel pipe for protection.
But on February 14, she escaped, with the help of embassy staff in Cairo, and is now warning other women about the dangers of holiday romances.
In letters she has sent to the Prime Minister and other ministers, Ms Churchill credits the diplomats with saving her life by working with Egyptian authorities to get her out of the house and on a flight home.
However, her ex-husband denies the claims, saying he never assaulted her and that problems in their relationship were her fault.
"In other countries the man feel the woman she don't respect him and I find that in her. It's not my fault."
Speaking out for the first time since arriving home, she said she was still recovering from an ordeal that had left her with physical and emotional scars and $30,000 out of pocket. . . .
"There were a couple of days I didn't have water or food. I lost 12kg in six weeks. It was semi-starvation."
One hellish night in February, fearing for her safety, Ms Churchill slept on the roof with a steel pipe.
"He came up with an Egyptian slave whip and beat me with it. It cut my arms open and my legs were severely bruised. I was screaming, 'Help me', and he said, 'No one's going to help you'. I knew he would kill me before he would let me out." . . .
Ms Churchill has words of advice for any woman considering a holiday romance in the Middle East: "Have a fling with them, [but] don't get into a relationship. Once you enter into any contract of marriage, you become their property." (Read more.)
Friday, March 9, 2012
New Zealand Woman Marries Muslim in Egypt, Gets Lesson in Qur'anic Justice
Muhammad's wife Aisha once admitted that Muslim women were treated more harshly than pagan women (Sahih al-Bukhari 5825). Why, you ask? Because Muslim men have a divine obligation to beat their wives into submission (Qur'an 4:34).