Islah and Al-Rashad NDC representatives reject legislation outlawing domestic abuse
This came after representatives of two parties known for their conservative leanings, the Islah Party and Al-Rashad Party, rejected the legislation, saying it violates Islamic law.
Amal Al-Makhdi, a Houthi representative at the NDC and supporter of the proposal, said both parties objected to an article that states, “The government is committed to protect women against all forms of violence, especially domestic violence, as well as protecting battered women.”
According to the NDC’s voting regulations, no legislation can be enacted if there is more than a 10 percent objection in any working group.
Out of 80 members in the Rights and Freedoms Group, the Islah Party has seven representatives, who along with the only member of Al Rashad Party, form 10 percent of the group.
Al-Makhidi said the committee will make some amendments to the proposal to prepare it to go to the group again for a vote.
One of the articles of the legislation the representatives of the Islah Party and Rashad Party in the working group took issue with is the punishment of a man if he physically abuses his wife.
Mona Ali Kulaib, one of five female representatives from the Islah Party, said she “will not agree to issues that oppose Islamic Sharia.”
According to Al-Makhdi, current Yemeni law does not include any articles that criminalize domestic violence against women.
Dr. Antlaq Al-Matwakil, an independent representative at the NDC, said the objection of those parties is politically motivated.
“Both parties have narrow-minded notions about women, considering them inferior, even though Islam treats men and women equally,” she said.
“Sometimes, certain topics are politicized, but some issues, such as protecting women against violence and harassment, are morally indisputable,” Al-Matwakil said.