DUBAI // Wadeema, the Emirati girl whose death shocked the nation and prompted the creation of the UAE’s new child protection law, was found buried in the Sharjah desert in 2012.
The eight-year-old was tortured to death by her father, Hamad Al Shirawee, and his girlfriend, Alanoud Al Amri.
The couple lived in a studio flat in International City where, between November 2011 and May 2012, they regularly burnt Wadeema and her younger sister, Mira, who was seven at the time, with irons and cigarettes, poured boiling water over them and beat them with sticks and bars.
Wadeema died after one such attack. Al Shirawee had beat his daughter for an hour with a bar, then locked her up in the bathroom before finding her dead at dawn the next day. She was then wrapped in a white cloth and buried in Al Badayer.
Al Shirawee and Al Amri were arrested after Al Shirawee’s brother paid a visit to their flat to check on Wadeema and her younger sister, who were both reported absent from school for an extended period. The uncle discovered through Mira that her father and his girlfriend had been torturing the two girls and that Wadeema had died.
In February 2013, the Dubai Criminal Court found the couple guilty of torturing both girls, causing the death of Wadeema.
The court sentenced Al Shirawee to death, later reduced to life in prison on appeal. Al Amri was also sentenced to life.