UAE Supreme Court rules it okay for husband to discipline wife (he just can't leave bruises)
A man may hit his wife, but he may not leave any marks, the Federal Supreme Court of the United Arab Emirates has ruled.
The UAE-based newspaper the National reports that a man has been fined about $130 for slapping and kicking his wife and daughter.
"According to Islamic law," the National's Hassan Hassan writes, "a man has the 'right to discipline' his wife and children, which can include beating them after he has exhausted two other options: admonition and then abstaining from sleeping with his wife."
The 23-year-old daughter should have been exempt from the beating, the court ruled, because once children reach puberty, they can no longer be disciplined.
The article reports that Ahmed al Kubaisi, the head of sharia studies at UAE University and Baghdad University, said:
"If a wife committed something wrong, a husband can report her to police.... But sometimes she does not do a serious thing or he does not want to let others know; when it is not good for the family. In this case, hitting is a better option."
| October 18, 2010; 12:45 PM ET
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