Islam is often blamed for violence towards suppressed women. The case of Noura Hussein, who is sentenced to death, testifies otherwise, says social advocate and novelist Yassmin Abdel-Magied
Violence against dames does not discriminate. One in three women across the globe suffer physical or forms of sexual violence in “peoples lives”, regardless of race, age or income. Intimate partner violence is the most common form, with physical violence occurring to as many as two out of three women who have ever been in an insinuate partnership.
This is not news, and yet, significant differences in how this violence is discussed is stark, depending on where and by whom it has been perpetrated. When the savagery occurs in majority Muslim countries, scholars are quick to blame Islam itself, instead of noticing the army of Muslim women who are fighting for their rights within the faith, and protecting maidens- and themselves- at all costs.
Noura Hussein, a young lady from Sudan, affords an helpful and urgent sample. At persons under the age of 16, Noura was forced into a union by her father. She refused and escaped from her family home near Khartoum to stay with her aunt in Sennar, around 250 km away. She lived there for three years, determined to finish her education, when she received statement that the marry schemes had been cancelled, and she was welcome to come home.
On her return, it became apparent that she had been tricked. The wedding ceremony was underway, and Noura was duly “given” to the groom. Distraught, the 19 -year-old refused to consummate the marriage for a number of daylights. Within the week, her husband’s tactics became increasingly vigorous. Noura’s spouse raped her, with the help of relatives who pinned her down during the act.
When the husband returned the next day to repeat the crime, Noura retaliated. She jabbed her husband a number of durations, ultimately killing her rapist. She thereafter returned to her family, who were allegedly then disowned her and turned her over to the police.
Over a year later, on 29 April, 2018, Noura was convicted of assassinate. On 10 May, she was sentenced to death. His family was offered the choice of either countenancing money compensation for the crime, or execution. They picked the latter. Now the family and community have 15 dates to appeal the sentence. They wished to be overrule the decision to execute Noura for protecting herself against physical and sexual violence, and steering an hopeless situation that no young woman should ever face.
Noura’s story is perhaps not unique in a nature where intimate partner violence is abounding. Nonetheless, “theres something” about Noura’s case that is indicative of a wider truth. The majority of people involved in raising awareness about this young woman’s case are other Sudanese Muslim girls. The lawyers working on the example in Washington DC are members of the Sudanese diaspora, and parole of the case contacted me through another Sudanese writer’s Instagram and blogposts. The majority of people fighting for Noura are women, Muslim women.
This reality flies in the face of those who claim that Muslim maidens are oppressed, subservient or believes in a religion that takes away their rights. It likewise is currently in ended opposition to men who try to use a warped form of sharia to justify any part of such different situations- the forced marriage, the assault, the sentencing. The dames insisting on Noura’s behalf point to both rule and theology: to be marriage without approval is forbidden in Islam. Child marriage is still practiced, although women continue to fight the laws and traditions that allow it.
However, as happens so often in cases like this, the narration becomes an opportunity for the airing of grievances and prejudices about Islam, through the proof of preaching for women’s rights. Islam is violent, beings will say, because of how they plow their women- and appear, here is an example that reinforces that disagreement!
Let the women who are advocates for #JusticeForNoura set an example to seeing how that is fundamentally inappropriate. The burden on Muslim dames is impossibly heavy- to defend themselves against both the stupidity of non-Muslims with an Islamophobic agenda, and the deeply patriarchal norms that exist within interpretings of sharia around the world. To restate Dr Susan Carland, Muslim women forever face a catch-2 2. However, when the fight truly is on, such as in the case of Noura, they are the first to step up to fight for each other’s rights and protection. Tell me, how is that oppression?
* Yassmin Abdel-Magied is a mechanical technologist, social counselor, and scribe. Inspect her website here