Women's Empowerment and Leadership Development for Democratisation

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Malaysia: Terengganu Hudud and Qisas bill

In April the state government, led by the opposition Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS), proposed a bill to institute new laws governing rape. It was set to be tabled in the State government special assembly in July.
At present, rape is considered a criminal offence under the federal laws and is not governed by Syariah Islamic laws legislating marriage, divorce, inheritance and other family matters. Initial drafts of the bill state that if the victim cannot prove the rape, she could be deemed guilty of qazaf (slanderous accusations) and liable to be whipped 80 times, and if an unmarried woman becomes pregnant, regardless of rape, she could be charged with zina (fornication) and could face 100 lashes or death by stoning. The Women's Centre for Change, Penang (Pusat Kesedaran Wanita) provides an overview of the bill.

Sisters in Islam (SIS), which fights for women's rights within the framework of Islam, describes the bill as "perversely unjust" and "a  total distortion" of Islamic law. It argues that much of Islamic jurisprudence historically has been made by men, and says poor implementation of hudud laws in Nigeria and Pakistan have resulted in "an extreme ... violation of women".