Early release of 'wife-beating' imam slammed
21 December 2004, MADRID-The Spanish deputy prime minister has attacked the decision to free a controversial imam who was jailed for writing a book which advised readers how to attack women without leaving any marks.
21 December 2004
MADRID-The Spanish deputy prime minister has attacked the decision to free a controversial imam who was jailed for writing a book which advised readers how to attack women without leaving any marks.
María Teresa Fernández de la Vega strongly criticised release of Mohamed Kamal Mostafa, who was freed after only serving 20 days of a 12-month sentence.
In an interview with the programme 'Ruedo Ibérico' on Spain's Antena 3 channel, the deputy prime minister said "this did not help to reinforce the line which Spanish society had adopted to domestic violence: zero tolerance".
She criticised the decision of the court in Barcelona to release Mostafa on Monday.
Women's groups have also attacked the early release of the controversial Islamic cleric.
Mostafa, the imam of Fuengirola in Andalusia, was jailed last month for one year.
But he was released and must go on a training course to learn about human rights.
Legal sources said he was released early because his imprisonment would not help his reintegration into society.
The course would be more likely to reform his ideas, they added.
Mustafa was originally given a 15-month sentence and fined EUR 2,160 when he became the first person found guilty of instigating gender-based violence under a recently-passed law in January.
A federation of 80 women's rights groups filed a complaint against Mustafa, one of the most prestigious Muslim clerics based in Spain, for a book he published in 2000 entitled The Islamic Woman.
The court heard how the book talks about how men should treat women 'rebels'.
Mustafa wrote that men should strike their women "on the hands and feet, making sure to use a cudgel that is not too thick so as not to leave permanent scar tissue".
"Inflict blows that are not too strong nor too hard, because the aim is to make them suffer psychologically and not to humiliate them or mistreat them physically," he said.
The judges found that the cleric "openly flaunts the principles of equality enshrined in the Constitution, advocating intolerable types of conduct based on sexual discrimination that are liable to criminal prosecution".
All copies of the book have been seized after an order was made by the judge.
Under Spanish law, however, first-time offenders do not have to serve jail terms of less than two years, so the sentence amounts to probation and a fine.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news