The Onaiza Girl, Again

The Onaiza girl case is back to make headlines after the court there upheld its earlier verdict. Judge Habib Al-Habib’s original stipulated that the girl must reach the age of puberty before determining whether she would continue her marriage solemnized in June 2007. A relative of the girl told CNN that the judge “insisted that the girl could petition the court for a divorce once she reached puberty.” The Court of Cassation had rejected the previous verdict and demanded that the case be reconsidered. But in Saturday’s hearing the judge stuck to his earlier verdict, after he failed to convince the husband to nullify the marriage contract in lieu of returning the dowry he paid.

I don’t understand the position of the judge. So he wanted the husband to nullify the marriage, but when the husband refused, he decided to stick to his earlier bizarre verdict? Anyways, I’m not surprised, especially when we remember that the Grand Mufti himself sees nothing wrong in marrying off girls who are 15 and younger. Sources told Saudi Gazette that if the elderly husband continues to refuse and the judge sticks to his verdict, the Court of Cassation will hand over the case to another judge. Let’s wait and see…

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33 thoughts on “The Onaiza Girl, Again

  1. Simple question:
    I know you are trying to seem noble and all.
    But if you were the judge, how would you rule and on what legal basis?
    By legal, I mean ‘Saudi Law’ legal

  2. Isn’t the sale of a woman or girl wrong (and that is what was done here a man sold his daughter to his creditor to pay his debt). Essentially this girl is a slave.

  3. The root (is this the correct term?) of this issue is the misdeed of our clerical establishment.

    Rowdy Saudi: I would say that your question pre-assumes that we use the current legal system, based on our current clerically run judicial system.

    I am not surprised that a bad system creates bad results such as this.

    To fix this result, we must fix our system. The fault lies not in this specific judicial decision, but rather in our judicial system.

  4. There is nothing wrong for women (females who have reached puberty) to get married. In America you can visit any middle school and find 10-13 year old girls talking about sex casually and having boyfriends and basically following the jahil pop culture here.

    The problem isn’t if they can get married or not because of their age, the problem is the jahilliyyah of the way women and girls are treated in general when it comes to marriage. They are like property in the Arab culture which is totally against the teachings of Islam. Parents force their daughters to marry whom ever will give them either a) money, b) pride, c) tribal status, or d) power.

    They forgot the most important element of marrying someone and that is their taqwa.

    May Allah guide us all to the truth. Ameen!

    • MR’s statement is so mind-bogglingly ridiculous.

      Girls menstruate now at ages nine, ten!

      She is certainly not old enough, not mature enough to run a household, her body CAN’T handle the rigor of bearing children, for what other reason than perversion can that old man want her?

      Talking about sex, kissing a boy, that’s not the same as having gross old man hands on you.

  5. @MR one big difference between America and Saudi is that girls’ choice….they aren’t force in marriage with someone that could be their father or grandfather….an 8 years old isn’t ready for marriage, I’ve read somewhere that the “husband” (a dirt old man) have to wait till she hit puberty but who will check and what about if she hits puberty at 9 or 10….I’m wondering does the child’s father really love her? In my opinion no

  6. I would really like to know about the qualification of these judges, do they actually have law degrees, or are they just high school graduates who studied some sharia courses. It is within that judge right to nullify that marriage, and doesn’t have to wait for the child to hit puberty to ask her. For God sake the kid ran away from this pervert, you think she wants to go back to him in a year or two.

    I just don’t understand how anyone at that age, or at any age for that matter would want to have sex with a kid that young. It is absolutely disgusting.

    P.S. Ahmed how come you never respond to any of the people commenting out here, I think it shows disrespect for the commentators especially when they ask you specific questions.

  7. @ MR

    10-13 year old children you have mentioned need parenting, not marriage. I dont see how this case relates to the example you gave about Americans, unless you are defending this case on the basis that if young Saudi girls are left unmarried they will pursue boyfriends like the “filthy” Americans.

    There needs to be a set age limit for the whole country to follow, a girl could hit puberty at 9 or 13 years of age and at that age they are not mature enough to enter into a marriage.

  8. I don’t understand the position of the judge. So he wanted the husband to nullify the marriage, but when the husband refused, he decided to stick to his earlier bizarre verdict?

    I don’t think he has the legal power to annul the marriage.

  9. to leila

    I read that comment by MR, but where did you see anything said anything about ‘filthy’ americans, can you read bitch?

  10. this marriage isnt even valid to begin with. according to Islam, a woman must give her consent before marriage. if he father forces her to marry, the bride has the right to nullify the marriage. there’s a clear hadith conveying that. where the heck did that *judge* learn the shari’ah from?

    • Muslimah,

      Technically, the marriage is valid because a girl who hasn’t reached puberty can not object to a a marriage. However, it isn’t within the spirit of Shariah Law.

      I don’t see why the Saudi government can’t just outlaw all marriages involving persons under the age of 16 – problem solved. Then you don’t have judges making a mockery of the system.

  11. It’s surprising how everyone just read the first paragraph of my comment and didn’t bother with the rest.

    Reminds me of how the Kuffar read the first ayah and forget the rest of the ayat before and after.

    Context people.

    May Allah give us hikmah. Ameen!

  12. MR, you’re kinda right. I would say they are confused and go into extremism. this extremism makes people, esp the youth go further away from Islam. I’ve lived in saudi arabia all my life, but it was only after moving away i learned ISLAM. I’m not saying saudi fact I think it’s the least fitnah country in the world.. wallah there are beautiful things abt saudi i would never find elsewhere…but they also have a couple of outdated laws that need big time reform. they need to start educating the youth abt the REAL islam. our deen is cool, but they in saudi make it look so extreme and medieval.
    the other arab countries have their problems too..but saudi is imp since it’s the birthplace of Islam and people will always look up to them as some kind of model Islamic state..Allahul’mustan.

  13. shafiq: the wali doesnt have the right to do dhulm on his daughter. the wali’s job is to make sure he marries his girls to men w/ taqwa and khuluq.
    this judge should be sacked! and the poor girl’s father punished…they didnt only mess up the poor kid’s life but also ruin Islam’s image..

  14. @muslimah for sure no country is perfect but at least in most of the countries a 50 yrs old who marry a CHILD is thrown in jail.

  15. but my point is maybe the US should mind their own business and look into their own backseat. who elected them as the world cops? and i dont want to go into that political discussion.

  16. @nuslimah The US aren’t the only ones that are blaming Saudi for this total lack of human rights …also SAUDI HUMAN RIGHTS are saying that it’s a perversion and that child marriage should be banned

    • And so is everyone on this site, but when the some people in the US complains about Human Rights in other countries, it just does people’s head in because of the sheer hypocrisy.

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