Saudi Judge reconfirms support for domestic violence against women

A Saudi judge told a conference on domestic violence that a man has the right to slap a wife who spends money wastefully and said women were as much to blame as men for increased spousal abuse.

Saudi Arabia bars women from voting, except for chamber of commerce elections in two cities in recent years. Women also cannot drive or travel without permission from a male guardian.Sohaila Zenelabideen Hammad, spokeswoman of the Saudi National Center for Human Rights, told the Associated Press on Monday that the judge’s remarks are reason for concern for being too extreme.

It is not acceptable, it is even forbidden in Islam to beat a woman on her face. … No matter what the woman does, the man has no right whatsoever and under any circumstances to beat his wife on the face, said Hammad, who was not at the conference. Regrettably, there is a common understanding in the Arab and Islamic world that man is the master who looks down on the woman and has the right to do whatever he wants to her. This is wrong, Hammad said.