Friday, February 8, 2013

Will A Child Rapist Walk Freely in Saudi Arabia?

It is hardly surprising that a person hears about a rape case and then walks off in indifference, going back to his/her own daily routine ignoring that the incident had taken place at all. Yes, the sheer number of women being raped today has become so large that rape is not a breath-taking incident anymore, and is considered almost parallel to burglary or theft incidents.

I feel disgusted by this human indifference but it doesn’t come out of thin air. Reading a rape incident that took place in Saudi Arabia, in which a father brutally raped and murdered his own daughter, brought it up.

Fayhan Ghamdi, an Islamic preacher, suspected that his 5- years old daughter was not a virgin. He took her to a doctor for a check, but this did not satisfy his doubt.  So, he used canes and electrical cables to force out a confession from his daughter. Not satisfied with this either, he ended up raping and then cruelly beating his daughter to death.

Now, will this man walk freely after what he did to his daughter?

The obvious answer is no way! But little do many people know that it is commonly believed in the localities that he will.

The rapist (since a person is defined by his actions, I will do the same for Fayhan by calling him a rapist), justifies his actions by saying that according to Quran ‘a father cannot be held accountable for the death of his children; there loss is enough of a punishment for him.’  

The authorities as well follow the clear path (sharia) laid out in the Quran, so instead of convicting the rapist with the most severe punishment, there was a debate on whether the mother should simply be paid money or not for the loss of her child. Furthermore, many of the judges believe that domestic violence is a family matter and the government should not have anything to do with it.

In short, the rapist can walk away freely in the name of religion. What kind of religion is this? I am sure the principles of Islam do not allow such a man to walk away without him being punished for his sins. I think that some people, like the rapist, interpret Quran in such a way that it suits their personal interests, which is definitely unethical to me. This misogyny of the Islamic laws in Saudi Arabia is not hidden from anyone, however no concrete action has been taken yet.

So, will the rapist walk freely in Saudi Arabia? Maybe yes!

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