New York Times
October 31, 2011
It was just a passing reference to marriage in a leader’s soberly delivered speech, but all week it has unsettled women in Libya as well as allies abroad.
In announcing the success of the Libyan revolution and calling for a new, more pious nation, the head of the interim government, Mustafa Abdul-Jalil, also seemed to clear the way for unrestricted polygamy in a Muslim country where it has been limited and rare for decades.
It looked like a sizable step backward for women at a moment when much here – institutions, laws, social relations – is still in play after the end of Moammar Gadhafi’s 42 years of authoritarian rule.
In his speech, Abdul-Jalil declared that a Gadhafi-era law that placed restrictions on multiple marriages, which is a tenet of Islamic law, or Shariah, would be done away with. The law, which stated that a first wife had to give permission before others were added, for instance, had kept polygamy rare here.
This article was posted: Monday, October 31, 2011 at 4:01 am