Source: Youm 7

An Egyptian man who murdered his wife of five months in the country's Al Maasara city early in September told police the crime was the result of a prank gone wrong.

During initial investigations, the defendant said he and the victim, now identified as Shorouq Mohammad, were "joking around" while he was carrying a knife. 

Minutes later, Mohammad, a 28-year-old lawyer, fell to the ground after suffering from two stab wounds during the incident. 

Speaking to Youm 7 newspaper, the victim's parents discredited her husband's version of events, accusing him of premeditated murder.

"She was pregnant at the time of her death"

"How was he playing a prank on her when he ended up stabbing her two times?" the victim's father asked.

Her mother also explained that after her death, the victim's friends told the family about marital problems she had been going through.

"She never told us anything about her marriage and was very discreet. We only knew she was having problems after her death," her mother said.

She also added that Mohammad was four months pregnant at the time of the murder.

"She was pregnant at the time of her death. She married in April and conceived just a month later," the victim's mother explained. 

Mohammad's husband continues to face charges in the case

After being investigated several times, Mohammad's husband stuck to his story, saying he never meant to hurt his wife and immediately took her to a hospital when he realized she was unconscious. 

However, the couple's neighbors put a dent in his version of events, stating they heard loud arguing and screaming on the night of the murder. 

The defendant continues to be in police custody and officials will further investigate the case as a crime of domestic abuse. 

Domestic abuse is a major problem in Egypt

According to the Egypt Demographic and Health Survey (EDHS) - which was carried out in 2005 - 47 percent of ever-married women in Egypt have reported being victims of physical violence.

Another survey by USAID in 2009 revealed that over 60 percent of married women in Egypt said they had experienced some form of violence during their marriage. 

Even though victims are often shamed into staying silent and not reporting abuse, more and more women have been raising their voices against domestic violence in recent months.