Cleric rapped for claiming rape impossible within marriage

January 22nd, 2009 - 5:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Jan 22 (DPA) A Melbourne cleric was urged Thursday to retract a ruling that Muslim men were free to rape their wives and hit them if they disobeyed.”Australia will not tolerate these sorts of remarks,” Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said. “They don’t belong in modern Australia, and he should stand up, repudiate them and apologize.”

In a lecture posted on the internet and titled The Keys to a Successful Marriage, Samir Abu Hamza said Muslim men could force their wives to have sex and were entitled to hit them if they were disobedient.

Hamza said rape was impossible inside marriage because a wife must always consent to sex.

“Under no circumstances is sexual violence permissible or acceptable in Australia - under no circumstances,” Rudd told reporters when asked to comment on the cleric’s view.

“Under no circumstances are other forms of violence, physical violence, acceptable towards women in Australia nor are they acceptable, in my view, to mainstream Muslim teachings,” Rudd said.

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