Apr 18 2009
That new Afghan Law which infuriated women for endorsing marital rape was misinterpreted according to a leading Islamic cleric. He said, “The new law DOES NOT permit marital rape, but it ALLOWS MEN TO REFUSE TO FEED THEIR WIVES IF THEY DENY THEM SEX.”
How very progressive of them!
A new Afghan law that has drawn Western condemnation for restricting women’s rights does not allow marital rape as its critics claim, but lets men refuse to feed wives who deny them sex, the cleric behind it says. Ayatollah Mohammed Asef Mohseni’s Shi’ite personal status law sparked controversy abroad because of a provision that ‘a wife is obliged to fulfil the sexual desires of her husband’.
This was read by some as an open door to marital rape, and together with clauses restricting women’s freedom of movement denounced as reminiscent of harsh Taliban-era rules.
The law has been criticised by Western leaders with troops fighting in Afghanistan, including U.S. President Barack Obama, who called it ‘abhorrent’. Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai, who signed the law last month, has since put it under review.
Its sexual clauses aimed only to ensure men’s sexual needs were met within marriage, because Islam prohibited them seeking satisfaction with other women. ‘Why should a man and woman get married if there is no need for a sexual relationship? Then they are like brother and sister,’ he told Reuters in an interview in his recently built central Kabul mosque and university complex.
‘It should not be compulsory for the wife to say yes all the time, because some men have more sexual desires than others,’ he said, adding that husbands should never force themselves on their wives and the law does not sanction that.
But women do have a duty to meet their husband’s needs.’If a woman says no, the man has the right not to feed her,’ Mohseni said.
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