82-year-old Palmira Silva was found beheaded in a garden in Edmonton, north London. A 25-year-old-man was arrested on suspicion of murder. Police have stated that there is no reason to suspect a terrorist motive.
This is not an “isolated incident”. She is the third woman to have been beheaded in London in less than six months. On the 3 June 2014, Tahira Ahmed, 38, was decapitated. Her husband, Naveed Ahmed, 41, was charged with her murder. In April 2014, Judith Nibbs, 60, was decapitated, allegedly by her estranged husband Demsey Nibbs, 67.
Last year, in June, Reema Ramzan, 18, was decapitated by boyfriend, Aras Hussain, 21. The year before, in October 2012, Catherine Gowing, 39, was decapitated and raped by serial rapist Clive Sharp, 47. In March the same year Elizabeth Coriat, 76, was decapitated by her son Daniel Coriat, 43; earlier the same month, Gemma McCluskie, 29, had been decapitated by her brother Tony McCluskie, 36.
A beheading is no less horrific if there is not a suspected terrorist motive. Yet, 100 women in the UK have been killed though suspected male violence so far this year. Each of their deaths should cause outrage. That they don’t, that fatal male violence against women is accepted as one of those things that happens, that a COBRA meeting hasn’t been called to stop men from killing women, should tell us all we need to know about who is – and who isn’t – seen as important in our society.