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Evil: Egypt’s First “Sex-Slave” Marriage

by Raymond Ibrahim

What is being dubbed as Egypt’s “first sex-slave marriage” took place mere days after the Muslim Brotherhood’s Muhammad Morsi was made president.

Sheikh Awn telling his concubine-bride what to say during their “nuptial vows,” which included her “enslavement” to the self-proclaimed Sharia expert.

Last Monday, on the Egyptian TV show Al Haqiqa (“the Truth”), journalist Wael al-Ibrashi began the program by airing a video-clip of a man, Abd al-Rauf Awn, “marrying” his “slave.” Before making the woman, who had a non-Egyptian accent, repeat the Koran’s Surat al-Ikhlas after him, instead of saying the customary “I marry myself to you,” the woman said “I enslave myself to you,” and kissed him in front of an applauding audience.

Then, even though she was wearing a hijab, her owner-husband declared her forbidden from such trappings, commanding her to be stripped of them, so as “not to break Allah’s laws.” She took her veil and abaya off, revealing, certainly by Muslim standards, a promiscuous red dress (all the other women present were veiled). The man claps for her as the video-clip (which can be viewed here) ends.

The owner-husband, Abd al-Rauf Awn, then appeared on the show, identifying himself as an Islamic scholar and expert at Islamic jurisprudence who studied at Al Azhar. He gave several Islamic explanations to justify his “marriage,” from Islamic prophet Muhammad’s “sunna” or practice of “marrying” enslaved captive women, to Koran 4:3, which commands Muslim men to “Marry such women as seem good to you, two and three and four… or what your right hands possess.”

For all practical purposes, and to avoid euphemisms, “what your right hands possess”—also known in Arabic as a melk al-yamin—is, according to Islamic doctrine and history, simply a sex-slave. Linguistic evidence further suggests that she is seen more as a possession than a human.

Even stripping the sex-slave of her hijab, the way Awn commanded his concubine-wife, has precedent. According to Islamic jurisprudence, whereas the free (Muslim) woman is mandated to be veiled behind a hijab, sex-slaves are mandated only to be covered from the navel to the knees—with everything else exposed. During the program Awn even explained how Caliph Omar, one of the first “righteous caliphs,” used to strip sex-slaves of their garments, whenever he saw them overly dressed in the marketplace.

Awn further explained that sex-slave marriage is ideal for today’s Egyptian society. He based his position on ijtihad, a recognized form of jurisprudence, whereby a Muslim scholar comes up with a new idea—one that is still rooted in the Koran and example of Muhammad—yet one that better fits the circumstances of contemporary society.

He argued that, when it comes to marriage, “we Muslims have overly complicated things,” so that men are often forced to be single throughout their prime, finally getting married between the ages of 30-40 (when they might be expected to have a sufficient income to open a household). Similarly, many Egyptian women do not want to wear the hijab in public.

The solution, according to Awn, is to reinstitute sex-slavery—allowing men to marry and copulate much earlier in life, and women who want to dress freely to do so, as technically they are sex-slaves and mandated to go about loosely attired, anyway….

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3 Responses

  1. Now, I could be completely wrong here (I know that’s never happened, but I’m told it’s possible), but that “bride” looks like a guy. I thought this from the still picture, but then in the video, when the hijab comes off, “she” looks rather well-built, and I don’t mean in a good way. 😉 Check here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHrUDAVn–s&feature=player_detailpage#t=1870s

    • I noticed the same thing- that “woman” looks very like a man. Can’t quite figure out why the slave owner would marry a man sex slave…Islam is very confusing!

      • A few comments on the YouTube vid raise the same issue. It could be she’s just ugly. Or it could be a case of “Manlove Thursday” (google it) gone wild (and from the looks, quite desperately so).

        Translation of language would be useful here.

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