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Muslim 'marriage manual' offers tips on wife beating

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
March 26th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A book entitled "A Gift for the Muslim Couple" is a purported marriage manual that offers helpful advice on wife beating. Within the book's opening pages, there is a passage that reads that "it might be necessary to restrain her with strength or even to threaten her." The volume has proved to be a hot seller in some bookstores, selling out.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The 160-page book, published by Idara Impex in New Delhi, India, is written by Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi. The author is described in the book's foreword as a "prolific writer on almost every topic of Islamic learning."

The book it readily available at online Islamic bookstores and the online Internet auction site eBay.

The author advises that "the husband should treat the wife with kindness and love, even if she tends to be stupid and slow sometimes."

On page 45, the book spells out the rights of the husband, which include his wife's inability to leave "his house without his permission," and that his wife must "fulfill his desires" and "not allow herself to be untidy ... but should beautify herself for him ..."

The book also advises that a husband may scold her, "beat by hand or stick," withhold money from her or "pull (her) by the ears," but should "refrain from beating her excessively."

"I wouldn't say it's hate, but it is inciting men to hit women," Tarek Fatah says, who describes himself as a moderate Muslim. "This is new to you, but the Muslim community knows that this is widespread, that a woman can be beaten. Muslim leaders will deny this, but... "

Muslim dominance over women has been making headlines for some time, with the recent lengthy trial and conviction of the Shafia family.

Mohammad Shafia, 59, his second wife, Tooba Yahya, 42, and their son, Hamed, 21, were each convicted in January on four counts of first-degree murder in what was characterized as an "honor killing" of four female family members as punishment for disobedience. They were handed life sentences with no chance of parole for 25 years.

Shafia's three daughters and his first wife were found drowned in a car at the bottom of the Rideau Canal in Kingston, Ontario, Canada in 2009.

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