01 November 2016

Toronto Police chaplain speaks out after online comments on women's 'obedience' draw concern

Canadian Council of Muslim Women head says Musleh Khan's comments 'appalling'.

A newly-appointed chaplain for Toronto police is speaking out after coming under fire from the police union for comments made about marriage and women's duties to their husbands.

Musleh Khan says he appreciates the criticism of his choice of words after a 2013 webinar surfaced.

Titled The Heart of the Home: the Rights and Responsibilities of a Wife, the webinar is intended for Muslim couples. In it, Khan states that a woman must be "obedient" to her husband.

In the almost hour-long seminar, Khan is heard saying that a woman must make herself available and "not withhold this right from her husband without a valid excuse," such as sickness or obligatory fasting. The video is posted on the YouTube page for Pure Matrimony, a dating site that brands itself for "practicing single Muslims."

"Upon deliberating on the definition of 'obedience' as being, 'To yield to explicit instructions or orders from an authority figure,' I agree that the term was inappropriate if used out of context," Khan said in a statement Tuesday.

"I realise how someone unfamiliar with this nuance can misunderstand my imprecise translation to mean something different to my intended meaning, and the meaning that I know my audience at the time understood clearly," he added, explaining that the Arabic word often translated as "obedience" in fact denotes loyalty, devotion and love. [CBC News] Read more