Muslim community leader Keysar Trad says an angry husband can beat his wife as “a last resort”.
The president of the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils made the remarks after Sky News presenter Andrew Bolt quoted a verse from the Koran, saying:
“It is permissible for him [the husband] to beat her [the wife] light with his hands.”
The controversial Muslim leader, who has previously called for polygamy in Australia, said he had studied the text with “a number of Islamic scholars” to reach a conclusion about the meaning of the verse.
“If you come home and you are really, really angry. We’ve seen many men act violently towards their woman,” he said on Wednesday. “This verse is saying really, is playing on the psychology of the man saying violence is a last resort.”
Mr Trad, who is also the founder of the Islamic Friendship Association, went on to say husbands first needed to consider gifts like flowers or chocolates.
“Before you even consider using your hand, before you consider any act of violence have you checked box number one which is counselling? Check box number two: what does counselling entail? Next time you should bring her a bunch of flowers, maybe you should bring her a box of chocolates.”
A skeptical host of The Bolt Report interrupted him to say:
“Maybe you should beat her if she doesn’t see any sense. Beat her. That’s what this says. Beat them. I’m reading the Koran.”
Mr Trad responded by saying:
“I understand what you’re saying but what I would say to you is a good person would never get to that step.”
Mr Bolt has this week also been critical of Muslim youth activist and ABC presenter Yassmin Abdel-Magied, who declared on Q&A that Islam was the “most feminist religion”.
In December, Mr Trad sparked controversy on the ABC’s The Drum program when journalist Hamish Macdonald challenged him about his support for polygamy in Australia, where it is illegal.
“We find it polarises views…there seems to be a lot of negative views in the public but there seems to be very little concern to people having mistresses or visiting a brothel. But when it is a committed responsible relationship that is proclaimed publicly it seems some of the Australian public…will make a big issue out of it.”
In September last year, Mr Trad said he had been writing love poetry to woo women to find a second wife after his spouse of 30 year gave her blessing for him to find another partner.
He said having more than one wife or de facto partner was a “tremendous responsibility”.
In September of 2016 he said:
“Most Muslims don’t do it, just like most people around the world don’t entertain the idea. It’s like having two jobs, you have to work extra hard to provide for them and provide well for them. It’s not for everybody. Some people relish the idea, some people don’t.”
Mr Trad’s father had two wives in Lebanon and he grew up watching him trying to provide for his family.
H/T: Daily Mail