15 December 2016

Sharia courts pose a growing threat to women’s rights

.... Sharia courts use child custody to exert pressure on women who have faced domestic violence and normalise violence against women.

In a documentary .... one woman who had secured a civil divorce was told by the Islamic Sharia Council that she would have to give up child custody to her ex-husband (who had only been allowed indirect access to the children by the civil court).

.... Despite all efforts to repackage and rebrand the courts, including by Islamic feminists, Sharia courts represent a concerted attempt by Islamists to normalise the denial of women’s rights in the family and gain further influence.

Clearly, Sharia courts are not compliant with either British law or international human rights treaties. By undermining British legal principles of equality before the law, the universal concept of one law for all and the protection of the rights of women and children, these courts help to increase discrimination, intimidation and threats against the most vulnerable.

By accommodating them, the government is itself in breach of its obligations.

The law and not religion must be the key basis for securing justice for all citizens. [The Freethinker] Read more