Excerpts from HRW report on Lebanese women
HRW fails to stress the fact that Muslim customs dominate the land, infiltrating even Christian culture in Lebanon.
Excerpt from report:
Lebanon, there are many ways for men to get a divorce, but few ways for women. Children can be removed from their mothers, even if the change isn’t in the children’s best interest. And when it comes to finances, there is no such thing as “marital property.” If a house is in a husband’s name – which is typical – it belongs to the man, even if a woman contributes financially or supports her husband at home and raises their kids while he works. These laws often force women into unfair compromises. Women often have to give up custody of their children and any financial rights to obtain a divorce.
Sunni, Shia, and Druze men can divorce their wives at will. Sunni and Shia men can even do this outside of a courtroom, sometimes in the absence and without the knowledge of their wife. They only need to pronounce the divorce – so literally just say “I divorce you” out loud – and it’s done, as far as the religious laws are concerned. It doesn’t need to be in front of an official. In one case we reviewed, a woman went to court to divorce her husband only to discover that he had already divorced her!
In Lebanon, polygamy is legal for Muslim men. Christian men who can’t divorce will sometimes convert to Islam and then remarry and have two wives. But the first wife can’t remarry. Additionally, her rights and the rights of their children, such as to inheritance, are diminished by the rights of the second wife.
in April, Lebanon passed a domestic violence law, a key advancement. But the new law states that religious law trumps it when the two conflict.
Now, while Human Rights Watch tries to play down the Islamic Cultural influence that allots women in Lebanon to serfdom, remember what a Christian woman's life is like in a Western culture. Thus