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Living Under Sharia: The Plight of Women in Saudi Arabia

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Ed Hussain, a reformed British Islamist and former member of Hizb-ut Tahrir, wrote of his experience of living in Saudi Arabia, that “In supermarkets I only had to be away from Faye (his wife) for five minutes and Saudi men would hiss or whisper obscenities as they walked past. When Faye discussed her experiences with local women at the British Council they said: ‘Welcome to Saudi Arabia.’”

He heard of a Filipino worker, who had brought his new bride to live with him in Jeddah. The couple took a taxi after visiting the Balad Shopping District. On the way, the Saudi driver complained that the car was not working and asked the man to push it. As the man came out, the driver sped away with the man’s wife. There was no clue about her whereabouts.

“We had heard stories of the abduction of women from taxis by sex-deprived Saudi youths. At a Saudi friend’s wedding at a luxurious hotel in Jeddah, women dared not step out of their hotel rooms and walk to the banqueting hall for fear of abduction by the bodyguards of a Saudi prince who also happened to be staying there,” wrote Hussain.

Prophet Muhammad’s child-wife Aisha had said, “I have not seen any woman suffering as much as the believing women…” [Bukhari 7:72:715]. The plight of Muslim women has remained the same at the birthplace, the heartland, of Islam.

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M. A. Khan is the author of Islamic Jihad: A Legacy of Forced Conversion, Imperialism and Slavery. He is a liberal humanist and edits the Website.
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