01 November 2016

Muslim women complain about Sharia inquiries

More than 100 Muslim women have complained about their treatment under two government probes into Sharia law.

The inquiries - one ordered by Theresa May when she was home secretary, and another by the home affairs select committee - are ongoing.

But some women have signed an open letter and said the aim was to ban Sharia councils, not reform them.

The Muslim Women's Network UK said the inquiries risked treating women like "political footballs".

However, the Home Office said its inquiry's chair, panel and advisers were "carefully selected and represent a wide range of relevant experience and expertise".

The councils are tribunals often used to settle disputes within the Muslim community.

The first evidence session on Sharia councils is due to be held by the Home Affairs Committee on Tuesday.

But Shaista Gohir, the chair of Muslim Women's Network UK, said the inquiries could patronise women.

"Everyone wants to listen to Muslim women when highlighting their terrible experiences.

"However when it comes to the solutions, everyone thinks they know what is best for them," she said. [BBC] Read more