Abusing women is un-Islamic: Saudi mufti
In his Friday sermon at Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque in Riyadh, the mufti said only bad people treat women badly.
"The psychological or physical abuse of wives, daughters and sisters is against the Islamic Shariah and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)," he said.
Al-Asheikh warned husbands and fathers who take the salaries of their wives and daughters that they are committing anti-Islamic acts.
"The fathers who make it a condition to have their daughters' salaries before they give their consent for marriage are equally wrong. Husbands who force their working wives to share in home expenses are committing erroneous acts. Islam made it the responsibility of the man to spend on the house," he told the worshippers.
The mufti also said it is haram (forbidden in Islam) when husbands ask their wives who request divorce to return the dowry before they consent to divorce. He also said burdening women with bank loans and letting them suffer the payment of installments is equally haram.
The mufti said polygamy, which is allowed by Islam under the condition of being just and fair, is not a loose right. "The first wife should have all her rights," he said.
He also warned against relying on matchmakers who draw a bright picture of the groom who may turn out in the end to be an unethical and irresponsible man.
"Matchmakers should convey a true picture of the groom and the bride," he said.
The mufti asked people to make the Prophet a role model in his treatment of women, citing a number of Hadiths that the Prophet never maltreated women.
"The Prophet was completely refined in the treatment of his wives, daughter and other Muslim women," he said.
The Prophet has said: "The best of you are the best to their wives; and I am the best to my wives."
The Ministry of Social Affairs has toll free telephone numbers in several cities and towns for women to report cases of violence against them.
By MUHAMMAD HUMAIDAN