Fight For Women’s Rights In Egypt

The Egyptian People’s Assembly has been engaged in discussions about the rights of women in certain aspects of society. There is a reference in the Quran pertaining to the number of witnesses in transactions: “get two witnesses of your own men, and if there are not two men, then a man and two women.” According to Zeinab Radwan, the passage is not discussing any inherent intellectual inferiority of women, but takes into account that at the time it was written, fewer women were engaged in business transactions. She challenges the view of some Musim men the passage means women views are only half the worth of male views.

The discussion of worth of testimony also plunged into issues pertainng to non-Muslims. Abdel-Moeti Byoumi, a member of the Islamic Research Council, agrees with Radwan that since Islam allows Muslim men to marry non-Muslims, it means a non-Muslim woman has the same rights as do Muslim women. Muslim Brotherhood MP Hamdi Zahran Hussein disagrees and argues Islam does not accord non-Muslim relativs the right to inherit from a Muslim. When a Muslim dies, only Muslim relatives are entitled to inherit.

There apparently is disagreement among Muslims regarding certain aspects of their faith. the world has changed dramatically from the days of Muhammad and today’s life entails Muslims and non-Muslims interacting in dozens of ways, both economic and social. Perhaps, it is time to make adjustments and bring the past into the present.

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