Friday, February 24, 2017

Australia's Sunni cleric-in-cheif Keysar Trad apologises for 'clumsy' comments about wife-beating


Inam ul-Haq Kauser, an imam from Australia's Ahmadiyya Muslim community, told SBS that "hitting or beating is not permitted" in their religion.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | AU Desk
Source/Credit: SBS News Australia
By Omar Dabbagh | February 24, 2017

The President of the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils, Keysar Trad, has apologised for condoning domestic violence as a 'last resort', calling his explanation of the Quran 'clumsy'.

On Wednesday night, Mr Trad told Andrew Bolt on Sky News that beating a woman was "step three" in a process to deal with relationships. He said people should not reach that step.

"What that verse is really putting as a scenario is if you come home and you're really, really angry — we've seen many men act violently towards their women — what this verse is saying really is playing on the psychology of the man saying violence is a last resort," he said.

"A good person would never get to that step because the first step would eliminate the problem."

The comments led to widespread condemnation, with Mr Trad failing in his first attempt to backtrack.

He told Studio 10 on Thursday it was "a last resort…that you actually never get to", before appearing on other television networks to denounce domestic violence "unequivocally".

In a statement posted on his Facebook page, the Islamic leader issued an apology.

"I condemn violence against women – it is never ok to hit a woman," he posted.

"Acknowledging my clumsy attempt to explain a verse from the holy Qur'an, I want to categorically condemn all forms of violence, especially violence against women.

"I condemn and deplore it and stress my continued zeal to support women against violence. I sincerely apologise if my attempt to explain the verse is understood any differently."

'Not a man' - Muslim leaders slam Trad

Australia’s Islamic communities have led the criticism levelled at Mr Trad.

Inam ul-Haq Kauser, an imam from Australia's Ahmadiyya Muslim community, told SBS that "hitting or beating is not permitted" in their religion.

"Islam gives full respect and honour in being a mother, being a wife, being a daughter and sister," he said.

"The Holy Prophet Muhammad never hit all his life. He said the best Muslim is 'he who is best with his family'."

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