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Dutch Woman Jailed for Reporting Her Rape in Qatar

World  (tags: Qatar, rape, jail, Rape victim, islam, islamic, islamist, jihad, jihadist, injustice, sharia, law, barbaric, corruption, crime, ethics, freedoms )

- 1008 days ago -
One thing I learnt while visiting Turkey, Iran,Afghanistan and Pakistan during the 1970's is that one should NEVER go visit an islamic country...


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Kathleen M (210)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 2:38 pm
Grimly noted. Thx Roger. Will never, ever visit an Islamic country's!

Animae C (507)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 2:42 pm
It's not the first time!

Maggie D (69)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 3:54 pm
Pretty soon we won't have to travel to visit an Islamic country. London already has a Muslim mayor. If we don't wake up and stop being apologists for them, it'll only be a matter of time. It may already be too late. Our tolerance to their intolerance is all that's required. Thanks, Roger.

Maggie D (69)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 3:55 pm
Darn! That should be, "Our tolerance OF their intolerance..." Thanks again, Roger.

Trish K (29)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 4:21 pm
And I thought Qatar a more civilized western country of the Emirates. Wrong, wrong. Over 51 million child brides under age 15 get married every year, and are most likely to die of physical abuse and sex or becoming pregnant.
Like the rest of the Arab world locked in 1500 year old capsule where nothing changes ( except the Quran ). For all it's wealth and showing off, I thought they might atleast educate their citizens. I see now where the congress gets it's platform on school and society. They are establishing Shari'ah law thru the genitals of women and men.

Lone F (58)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 5:43 pm
Thanks for the article dear Roger!

Judy C (91)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 6:17 pm
It's hard to believe such archaic and sexist laws still exist. Anyone traveling to countries dominated by what is referred to as "Sharia law" need to get fully informed before going there, because misinformation about Islam is RAMPANT. People invest all kinds of energy into hating Muslims, when their understanding of them is next to nil. This is not to say that there are not hateful and abusive Muslims, just as there are hateful and abusive Christians, Jews, etc. The key is INFORMATION.

Sharia Law

Is Islamic Family Law today really based on Shari’a?
Why it is important to know.

By Professor Abdullahi Ahmed An-Nai’m

Adapted for MPV by Tynan Power
MPV thanks the generous contribution of the Mohhsin & Fauziah Jaafar Foundation for making this adaptation possible.


This is adapted from the chapter “Shari’a and Islamic Family Law: Transition and Transformation” by Professor Abdullahi Ahmed An-Na’im in Islamic Family Law in a Changing World: A Global Resource Book. Professor An-Na’im shows us that Islamic Family Law (IFL) is not the same as Shari’a. Since IFL is based on human interpretation and judgment, it is not a divine order from God to Muslims. It can be changed based on new interpretations in order to achieve justice and equality for Muslim women in their families and communities today.

If you’re not sure what a word or phrase means, please refer to the Notes section.

Chapter 1

There is a lot of confusion about Shari’a and Islamic Family Law. What is Shari’a?

In Arabic, the word “shari’a” means “way” or “path”. It is pronounced SHA-ree-ah. Shari’a is not a legal system. It is the overall way of life of Islam, as people understand it according to traditional, early interpretations. These early interpretations date from 700 to 900 CE, not long after the Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) died in 632 CE. Shari’a can evolve with Islamic societies to address their needs today.

Is Shari’a the “word of God”?

No. Shari’a was not revealed by Allah (God). It is based on the Qur’an and things the Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) said and did. Some of the sources of Shari’a, such as the Qur’an, are considered divine (or the “word of God”) by Muslims. However, Shari’a was created by people who interpreted the Qur’an and the words and actions of the Prophet Muhammad(PBUH).

How did Shari’a come about?

To understand how Shari’a came about, it’s important to understand a little bit about history. The Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) is believed to have been born in 570 CE. The Qur’an was revealed to Muhammad(PBUH) starting around 610 CE. Early Muslims followed the guidance of the Qur’an and the example of the Prophet Muhammad(PBUH). If they had a question, they could just ask him. After he died, people would ask their questions to the Prophet’s family and friends—people who had a good idea of what he might have answered. The Prophet’s friends and family would often tell stories about things the Prophet said or did, to help explain their answers. These stories came to be called Hadith.

It wasn’t long before the Prophet’s friends and family—and everyone who knew him—had died. People needed a way to figure out answers based on the Qur’an and Hadith. They started looking for patterns—”Did the Prophet(PBUH) always give the same kind of answer in similar situations?”—and principles—”Does the Qur’an tell us to be compassionate in many different situations?” These patterns and principles were put together into a system, along with specific rules in the Qur’an and Hadith, so people could figure out the answers to their questions. The people who put the traditional interpretations of Shari’a together also included some other things, like common practices from their time and cultural practices from their area of the world.

How was Shari’a used in the beginning?

As time went on, people had new questions about new problems. Religious scholars could use Shari’a to try to figure out what people should do. The goal was to try to get as close as possible to what the Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) would have said if he were still around. When early scholars interpreted Shari’a, it was called ijtihad.

Even very religious, well-educated scholars could make mistakes, though. Sometimes they disagreed with each other. That is why there are different Islamic schools of thought, called madhahib.
Is there a difference between Shari’a and Islamic Law?

Yes. Shari’a isn’t a legal system. It includes Islamic principles to help guide people to new answers, and it includes common cultural practices that had to do with a specific time and place in history. Muslim rulers wanted a way to make Shari’a into law. To do that, they decided which rules needed to be laws, first. Then they used interpretations of Shari’a to show people that the new laws were Islamic. The result was what we call Islamic Law.

Islamic Law is always based on someone’s interpretation of the Shari’a (which is an interpretation of the Qur’an and Hadith). Because it is a human interpretation, Islamic Law can mean different things in different places and at different times in history.

Today, interpretations of Shari’a are usually still limited to rules of interpretation (called usul al-fiqh) that were established by early scholars before 900 CE. More recently scholars have called for new ijtihad to meet the changing needs of modern Islamic societies.

Do Islamic countries today use Islamic Law?

Yes and no. Many Islamic countries believe they are following Shari’a in family law matters, but Shari’a is not a legal system. These countries actually use some kind of Islamic Law in family matters, and in all other matters apply European-style law left over from colonization. Iran, Saudi Arabia and a few other countries claim that most of their laws are based on Shari’a, but, in fact, most of those laws are secular. Even those laws which come from Islamic Law are different from place to place because they are interpreted by people—and those people are influenced by their culture.

Still, Islamic Law is followed by many Muslims as a way of life, not as law. In that case, it is a personal choice, based on the person’s own understanding and beliefs.

Are all laws in Islamic countries based on Islamic Law?

No. Today, many Islamic countries use some version of Islamic Family Law (also called “IFL” in this article), even if they use secular laws for all other kinds of laws.

What is Islamic Family Law?

IFL is a type of law that covers topics like marriage, divorce, custody of children and the status of women. It also may be called Muslim Personal Status Law. The idea of IFL was introduced by European colonial powers. Colonial governments separated the field of family law from the rest of Shari’a, then enforced IFL as national law, according to European models of government. All other fields of law came under secular European-style laws.

Read on to learn what laws were like in Islamic countries before and during colonization....

I certainly hope this poor woman gets to go home, without punishment!

Rose Becke (141)
Sunday June 12, 2016, 10:11 pm
I saw this on the news makes me bloody angry

Darren Woolsey (218)
Monday June 13, 2016, 12:07 am
Who are largely responsible for law making. .. ?

Were it women, the dynamic within the world, would be changed, even if only subtly.

basabi Banerjee (28)
Monday June 13, 2016, 11:13 am
The symbol beside the report is baffling. It is a Hindu letter OM written in Sanskrit. It can't go with anything related to any other religion specially Islamic

Knud Thirup (53)
Monday June 13, 2016, 12:44 pm
It will happen again until...?

Monika A (94)
Monday June 13, 2016, 12:45 pm
Its hard to believe ... :-/

Birgit W (160)
Monday June 13, 2016, 1:15 pm
People should boycott the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Judy says it all. Thanks.

Mandi T (366)
Monday June 13, 2016, 1:31 pm
Good grief !

Doris F (19)
Monday June 13, 2016, 1:51 pm
noted :-(

Hartson Doak (39)
Monday June 13, 2016, 2:14 pm
Okay girls boycott the games. Oh, keep your husbands home,too.

Colleen L (3)
Monday June 13, 2016, 2:51 pm
This is getting disgusting the way the laws are. Makes me boil with anger. Thanks Cal

Colleen L (3)
Monday June 13, 2016, 2:53 pm
Sorry, Roger, I had the name of the one that I signed right before. Thanks Roger

Sheryl G (359)
Monday June 13, 2016, 3:00 pm
Stay away from there......

Janet B (0)
Monday June 13, 2016, 3:24 pm

John De Avalon (36)
Monday June 13, 2016, 3:49 pm
Astonishing and disturbing.

It's like Qatar is caught in a medieval time warp.

Anne K (139)
Monday June 13, 2016, 5:47 pm
Horrible and infuriating!

Jamie Clemons (282)
Monday June 13, 2016, 6:24 pm
Why are you using a Buddhist symbol? You need to change that symbol it has nothing to do with Islam. Om Auṃ or Oṃ, Sanskrit: ॐ) is a sacred sound and a spiritual icon in Indian religions. It is also a mantra in Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism

margaret cochran (41)
Monday June 13, 2016, 6:36 pm
how terrible

Sheila D (28)
Monday June 13, 2016, 6:58 pm
Any country that treats it's women as second class citizens, or worse, should be avoided. Thanks for the warning.

Stan B (123)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 1:41 am
It's a Muslim country. Par for the course.

Darren Woolsey (218)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 2:25 am
Dandelion is right. . . if violence is going to be perpetuated, one doesn't travel TO the area to add fuel to the fire.

John De Avalon (36)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 2:42 am
And are we really staging the 2022 World Cup there???? No issue with the World Cup going to an Arab country, it is a global game after all. But on this showing ....
Morocco would be a better choice.

Danuta W (1251)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 4:11 am

Sheryl G (359)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 6:02 am
FIFA’s Impossible, Corrupt Qatar Math: How FIFA Had to Have Known Forced Labor Was Needed for 2022’s Qatari World Cup

Fifa officials arrested on corruption charges as World Cup inquiry launched

Per John's comment

LucyKaleido ScopeEyes (82)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 6:03 am
These archaic rules & laws have really got to go!

But their existence shouldn't be used as an excuse to bash Islam & Muslims in its/their entirety... or mislead people into thinking that only in Muslim countries are women's rights trampled on!

There are anti-woman, misogynist attitudes and subtext, explicit or implicit, in almost every religion! We shouldn't forget that religions were invented in ancient times, and by men! And they have far too often been distorted in modern times, giving rise to extremist, fundamentalist versions that are not adhered to by all.

Look at the Republican 'war against women' that has been ongoing for some time. Much of this is based on Christian fundamentalism, but I have not noticed a vast change in public opinion leading to calls to condemn Christianity.

US women have been undergoing prosecution, imprisonment, giving birth while shackled, having cesarean section imposed, been sentenced to prison for miscarriage, all because of a new 'invention' called 'fetal rights,' or 'fetal personhood,' which has been translated into legislation in various states and has led to a frightening array of practices which completely overturn women's rights! We are now facing a new situation which has required the invention of a new term, never before heard, never before needed : 'the criminalization of pregnancy'!

The case of Purvi Patel, the young Indian American sentenced to 20 years in prison in Indiana for feticide and child neglect after miscarrying, is merely the most shocking and visible portion of the iceberg.
Before you think I'm off the wall, take a good look at this Executive Summary: "Arrests of and forced interventions on pregnant women in the United States (1973-2005): The implications for women's legal status and public health," Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, by Paltrow & Flavin, (Lynn Paltrow is the founder and executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women.)

Nor should we forget the rape epidemic taking place on American campuses! Women students are certainly not arrested for claiming rape, but their sexual assault claims have been swept under the rug or rejected by universities. In 2014, the NYTimes reported, "Female students are raped in appalling numbers, and their rapists almost invariably go free .../... only a minuscule percentage of college women who are raped — perhaps only 5 percent or less — report the assault to the police." Campus rape was already a serious problem before 2007, since it was in that year that a "carefully controlled study was conducted for the Department of Justice."

Women are badly treated, as second or third class citizens, in many countries, but it would be wrong to think that it's necessarily 'elsewhere' that injustices take place & women's rights flouted. It's just too easy to point the finger & say when talking about Muslim countries, it's "Par for the course." Take a look in your own backyard!

If we care about women's rights, we need to defend women everywhere. And stop using injustices against women as an instrument for speading anti-Muslim prejudice. It's women and women's rights that count, not an islamophobic scoreboard.

Darren Woolsey (218)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 6:13 am
This is one of the many reasons why we need more women in more prominent roles (managers, power-possessors) throughout all levels of societies and cultures. Male egoism has been one major component to preventing women from balancing out the masculine and feminine energy.

LucyKaleido ScopeEyes (82)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 6:14 am
Are we so superior to those backward nations with their archaic laws??
Aren't we supposed to be much, much 'better' & more 'advanced'?

NYTimes Op-Ed, NOV. 7, 2014 - "Pregnant, and No Civil Rights," By LYNN M. PALTROW and JEANNE FLAVIN

WITH the success of Republicans in the midterm elections and the passage of Tennessee’s anti-abortion amendment, we can expect ongoing efforts to ban abortion and advance the “personhood” rights of fertilized eggs, embryos and fetuses.

But it is not just those who support abortion rights who have reason to worry. Anti-abortion measures pose a risk to all pregnant women, including those who want to be pregnant.

Such laws are increasingly being used as the basis for arresting women who have no intention of ending a pregnancy and for preventing women from making their own decisions about how they will give birth.

How does this play out? Based on the belief that he had an obligation to give a fetus a chance for life, a judge in Washington, D.C., ordered a critically ill 27-year-old woman who was 26 weeks pregnant to undergo a cesarean section, which he understood might kill her. Neither the woman nor her baby survived.

In Iowa, a pregnant woman who fell down a flight of stairs was reported to the police after seeking help at a hospital. She was arrested for “attempted fetal homicide.”

In Utah, a woman gave birth to twins; one was stillborn. Health care providers believed that the stillbirth was the result of the woman’s decision to delay having a cesarean. She was arrested on charges of fetal homicide.

In Louisiana, a woman who went to the hospital for unexplained vaginal bleeding was locked up for over a year on charges of second-degree murder before medical records revealed she had suffered a miscarriage at 11 to 15 weeks of pregnancy.

Florida has had a number of such cases. In one, a woman was held prisoner at a hospital to prevent her from going home while she appeared to be experiencing a miscarriage. She was forced to undergo a cesarean. Neither the detention nor the surgery prevented the pregnancy loss, but they did keep this mother from caring for her two small children at home. While a state court later found the detention unlawful, the opinion suggested that if the hospital had taken her prisoner later in her pregnancy, its actions might have been permissible.

In another case, a woman who had been in labor at home was picked up by a sheriff, strapped down in the back of an ambulance, taken to a hospital, and forced to have a cesarean she did not want. When this mother later protested what had happened, a court concluded that the woman’s personal constitutional rights “clearly did not outweigh the interests of the State of Florida in preserving the life of the unborn child.”

Anti-abortion reasoning has also provided the justification for arresting pregnant women who experience depression and have attempted suicide. A 22-year-old in South Carolina who was eight months pregnant attempted suicide by jumping out a window. She survived despite suffering severe injuries. Because she lost the pregnancy, she was arrested and jailed for the crime of homicide by child abuse.

These are not isolated or rare cases. Last year, we published a peer-reviewed study documenting 413 arrests or equivalent actions depriving pregnant women of their physical liberty during the 32 years between 1973, when Roe v. Wade was decided, and 2005. In a majority of these cases, women who had no intention of ending a pregnancy went to term and gave birth to a healthy baby. This includes the many cases where the pregnant woman was alleged to have used some amount of alcohol or a criminalized drug.

Since 2005, we have identified an additional 380 cases, with more arrests occurring every week. This significant increase coincides with what the Guttmacher Institute describes as a “seismic shift” in the number of states with laws hostile to abortion rights.

The principle at the heart of contemporary efforts to end legal abortion is that fertilized eggs, embryos and fetuses are persons or at least have separate rights that must be protected by the state. In each of the cases we identified, this same rationale provided the justification for the deprivation of pregnant women’s physical liberty, as well as of the right to medical decision making, medical privacy, bodily integrity and, in one case, the woman’s right to life.


Past Member (0)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 6:39 am
Where's justice!!!

Marija M (25)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 7:16 am
just no proper words...

Winn A (179)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 7:31 am
So sad for this woman - when will it end?

Janis K (129)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 7:52 am
Thanks for sharing

Roberto MARINI (88)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 9:16 am
Thank you

Melania P (123)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 10:41 am
So sick of these kind of stories, until when? :(

Beth M (138)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 10:43 am
American victims of rape are often blamed for the rape, too. Where does this mentality come from?

Janet B (0)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 1:55 pm

Gustavo Castro Leal (101)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 3:15 pm
I fully agree with Dandelion if I understood exactly what she said. It is up to FIFA or the organizers of any event in a country where the laws are absolutely strange and violate the western citizen, make arrangements with the local committee so that such events are not repeated, that is, during the games, there is a kind the "suspension" of certain penalties that apply only in Muslim countries under penalty of no longer being carried out international matches in these nations. But then comes the big problem that involves, ultimately, all the gear that moves the world: the financial interest that far outweighs the individual interests of any citizen. It is unfortunate, but the only condition is each on his own, feel that the journey is risky, boycott the games. Thanks, Roger.

Past Member (0)
Tuesday June 14, 2016, 6:39 pm
"Dutch Woman Jailed for Reporting Her Rape in Qatar"

Free The Dutch Woman and Jail Qatar.

LucyKaleido ScopeEyes (82)
Wednesday June 15, 2016, 4:38 am
When I came across an UPDATE on this story last night (around 2 - 3 pm US East Coast time), I came over here straightaway to post it, but apparently my comment didn't come out, for some reason! Can't find it in my 'sent' file, either. So here goes again:

UPDATE from The Guardian, Monday 13 June 2016 :
"Dutch woman held in Qatar after rape claim to be deported - The 22-year-old was given a one-year suspended sentence, while man accused of attacking her was sentenced to 140 lashes." “We will do everything to get her out of the country as soon as possible ... ," the Dutch ambassador to Qatar, "present in the packed courtroom," told reporters.
The presumed victim, who was not present at the hearing. was found guilty of adultery, given a one-year prison sentence --suspended for three years-- by the Qatari court, and fined 3,000 riyal (£600). The Guardian reporter doesn't say whether she'll have to pay this.

I was pretty sure it would end up this way, I mean a happy ending for the Dutch woman: Westerners wrongfully detained on 'morality' charges in countries like Qatar or Iran are usually freed once their country's diplomats get cracking on the case. Which is not to underplay the three months this poor woman spent in prison, "waiting for her case to be brought to court." It must have been so frightening for her, particularly as she's so Young. It would seem that the Dutch were a bit slow to act, since "Dutch MPs voiced concern over the weekend that nobody from the Dutch embassy visited her until three weeks after her arrest, according to [her lawyer]."

Her presumed assailant, a Syrian national, will probably die from the 140 lashes! I don't think anyone can survive more than 30 or 40...

If you read the article, you'll see that they were both charged with 'extramarital sex' - he wasn't charged with rape at all- and drinking alcohol!

The case seems less open & shut than I first thought, as the Guardian reports: "Some Dutch media queried her account after it emerged over the weekend that her travelling companion had admitted to working as a prostitute. The woman’s mother confirmed that her daughter had converted to Islam, which the Dutch foreign ministry said was a “complicating factor” in the case."

But, of course, the guilt or innocence of the two isn't what's at stake here. It how a claim of rape or sexual assault is dealt with in Qatar.

Someone mentioned being surprised that Qatar would have this type of law. I think that's because, as WIKI tells us, "Qatar is a high income economy and is a developed country, backed by the world's third largest natural gas reserves and oil reserves.[16] The country has the highest per capita income in the world. Qatar is classified by the UN as a country of very high human development and is the most advanced Arab state for human development.[17]

I didn't know anything about the UN rating countries in terms of human development, I learned [@ ] that the human development index (HDI) score is determined by scoring countries on an assortment of benchmarks or reference areas. "The main index scores and ranks countries according to life expectancy at birth, expected and mean years of schooling as well as gross national income (GNI) per capita. Other factors that influence the rankings are the well-being and richness of people’s lives, based on the opportunities and choices they have."

Qatar's [Dec. 2015] score "dropped significantly in the rankings of some domestic issues such as the gender inequality index, where it now ranks 116th out of 155 states."

"Its position was also pulled down for its labor force participation score, with only half of women aged 15 years recorded as working, compared to 95.5 percent of men.

"However, residents of Qatar have a strong sense of well-being, according to figures in the UN report, which examined satisfaction with healthcare and education, as well as their perceptions of safety and standard of living.

"Qatar’s overall live-satisfaction score was 6.4 out of 10 (with 10 being the most satisfied). Nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of respondents said they were satisfied with the quality of education, 90 percent with healthcare, 86 percent with standard of living and 92 percent said they felt safe in the country.

"Just under three-quarters (73 percent) of those who took part said they were in their ideal job – compared to 85 percent in top-of-the-table Norway and 61 percent in Saudi Arabia."

I'm a little surprised that working at the age of 15 would be a good point for human development! That seems awfully strange to me, when optimizing human development should mean kids are at school, not working, as young teens!

Past Member (0)
Wednesday June 15, 2016, 9:27 am

The video was bad or cannot be played from the Texas State Law Library-I'm getting the soccer protest/criminal investigation to Qatar hosting the games!

Read more:
Follow us: @smh on Twitter | sydneymorningherald on Facebook

Lynne Buckley (0)
Wednesday June 15, 2016, 12:58 pm

Janet B (0)
Wednesday June 15, 2016, 1:52 pm

Roger G (148)
Wednesday June 15, 2016, 3:15 pm
noted, thanks

Janet B (0)
Thursday June 16, 2016, 12:25 pm

Lenore K (0)
Thursday June 16, 2016, 3:40 pm
that's horrible, there is justice with Jesus

Jonathan Harper (0)
Friday June 17, 2016, 12:16 am

Lynsey Terry (0)
Friday June 17, 2016, 10:19 am
No surprises there. Let's pretend it never happened. Morons

Eleonora Oldani (37)
Friday June 17, 2016, 2:23 pm

Thanks, Judy and Lucy, for clearing the dust a bit on the "religious" issue. It always amazes me how fast everybody jumps on the bandwagon "religion" when it comes to Muslim countries.

A quick legal comparison - Capital punishment by country would have clarified the issue. Most Muslim countries have the death penalty for rape - like e.g. Egypt (if the victim is also kidnapped and if it is specially brutal or if the victim died as a consequence), Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Syria, Bangladesh, Iran, etc.

I do not understand why this case has not been treated as what it obviously was: rape. Qatar doesn't have the death penalty for rape but it has mandatory prison sentence for the perpetrator. So ... what's behind it?

Angeles Madrazo (298)
Friday June 17, 2016, 4:45 pm

Janet B (0)
Friday June 17, 2016, 5:10 pm

Janet B (0)
Saturday June 18, 2016, 12:32 pm

lisa O (6)
Saturday June 18, 2016, 6:46 pm
I really find it hard to believe how many still blame victims for sex crimes! So infuriating.
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