First Published: 2005-04-12

 
Practice of forced marriage banned in Saudi
 

Saudi grand mufti bans forcing women to marry against their will, calls for imprisonment of violators.

 

Middle East Online

Saudi women getting more rights in a male-dominated society

RIYADH - Saudi Arabia's grand mufti has banned the practice of forcing women to marry against their will, calling for the imprisonment of violators, the official SPA news agency reported Tuesday.

"Forcing a woman to marry someone she does not want and preventing her from wedding that whom she chooses ... is not permissible" under Islamic law, said Sheikh Abdul Aziz al-Sheikh, who heads the Council of Senior Ulema (scholars), the kingdom's highest religious authority.

"Anyone who insists on forcing a woman ... to marry against her will is disobeying God and His prophet (Mohammed)," he said.

The top Muslim cleric said anyone who does not give up this pre-Islamic practice "should be punished by imprisonment and should not be released until he drops his demand, which contravenes the provisions of sharia," or Islamic law.

Violators should be kept behind bars until they commit to "refrain from aggressing the woman, her legal tutor and the man she marries, and until the chief of their tribe or another influential member of the tribe guarantees that they will comply with this and refrain from aggression," Sheikh added.

Saudi women are required to cover from head to toe in public in the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom, where they are also banned from driving.

 

Two Danes stabbed by man shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ in Gabon

UN considers rejecting Trump Jerusalem decision

Israeli air traffic halted due to strikes

Iran's schools suffocate in smog

Christmas in Jordan dimmed by Jerusalem crisis

Turkey slams Austria ‘discrimination’

Tunisia elections delayed

Istanbul summit strong on the rhetoric, weak on concrete steps

Morocco’s Islamists elect new leader, walking away from predecessor’s populism

Palestinians call for protests against Pence Jerusalem visit

Palestinian billionaire detained in Saudi Arabia

Egypt opens Rafah crossing for four days

Turkey court releases 7 suspects in New Year attack trial

Palestinian activist killed in Gaza protests

Foreign fighters a worry as IS struggles to survive

Over half Syrian refugees in Lebanon live in 'extreme poverty'

Palestinians killed in continuing protests over Jerusalem occupation

Bourita: Extraordinary meeting between ECOWAS, Morocco to be held beginning of 2018

Saudi-led air strikes, clashes as Yemen forces battle rebels

Sahel force funding shows terrorism fight is Saudi 'priority'

UN 'appalled' at mass execution of jihadists in Iraq

Iraq's Sistani says Hashed should be under government control

Middle-class Egypt adapts as costs soar

Somalia's budget meets IMF terms

Israel PM questioned in graft probe

US says Iran supplied ballistic missile to Yemen rebels

Lebanon approves bid for oil, gas exploration

US to present 'irrefutable evidence' of Iran violations

Istanbul 'to remove Gulen links' from street names

Iraq hangs 38 jihadists

Pence to visit Middle East despite controversy

Hamas chief calls for continued Jerusalem protests

EU to repatriate 15,000 migrants from Libya in two months

Syria Kurds fear US ally will desert them after IS defeat

Israeli drugmaker Teva to cut 14,000 jobs over two years

Turkey rescues 51 migrants stranded on rocks

Saudi, UAE hold talks with Yemen Islamists

18 killed after bomber strikes Mogadishu police academy

Israeli air strikes target Hamas military facilities

US-led air strikes kill 23 civilians in Syria

Israel union calls nationwide strike over pharmaceutical giant job cuts

UN envoy urges Putin to press Assad for elections

Yemen's Huthi rebels release pro-Saleh media staff

Israel intelligence minister invites Saudi prince to visit

Saudi-led strikes kill 30 in rebel-run Yemen prison