Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Iraq secularists denounce "Islamist" constitution

Secular Iraqis said on Wednesday, August 24, that a proposed new constitution left no room for doubt about the Islamist path the country was heading down two years after a U.S.-led invasion was supposed to produce greater freedoms. The document presented to parliament on Monday is suffused with the language of political Islam in defining the state, and assigns a primary role to Islam as a source for legislation. . . . The draft says Islam is the official religion of the state and there can be no law that contradicts the "fixed principles of its rulings". The preamble says the constitution responds to "the call of our religious and national leaders and the insistence of our great religious authorities". "Human rights should not be linked to Islamic Sharia law at all. It should be listed separately in the constitution," said Safia Souhail, Iraq 's ambassador to Egypt. The prominent women's rights campaigner denounced wording that grants each religious sect the right to run its own family courts -- apparently doing away with previous civil codes -- as an open door to further Islamicise the legal system. By Andrew Hammond, Reuters Foundation, AltertNet.

http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/HAM421341.htm (last visited August 24, 2005).

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/family_law/2005/08/iraq_secularist.html

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