Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat – A fatwa originating from Turkey has given women the right to strike their husbands in cases of self-defense.
Sheikh Mohsen al Obeikan, an adviser to the Saudi Ministry of Justice and a member of the Saudi Shura Council agreed with some Islamic scholars in Turkey and Egypt in this regard. “This [issue] is acknowledged by Islamic jurists and it has roots in Islamic Shariah, the Quran and the Hadith [Prophetic traditions],” said the Sheikh. He referred to the following excerpts of the Quran: ‘The recompense for an injury is an injury equal thereto (in degree),’ [Surat Ashoura: 40] and ‘…whoever then acts aggressively against you, inflict injury on him according to the injury he has inflicted on you…’ [Surat al Baqara: 194]
Al Obeikan, who spoke to Asharq Al-Awsat by phone, said women should only hit their husbands if they are defending themselves.
Fethullah Gulen, a prominent religious figure in Turkey, ruled that it is within women’s rights to defend themselves by countering violence with violence, and that women should learn martial arts such as Karate, Judo and Taekwondo to defend themselves against violent husbands.
The fatwa has been met with controversy among the conservatives in Turkey as it may “stir up rebellion” within families.