ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – “Men who are against polygamy are physically incomplete and ill.
They are incapable of it and cannot do it,” a woman wearing niqab said and alleged that clerics who oppose polygamy “have strayed from religion.” The fully veiled woman who refused to mention her name is married to a polygamous man calling on organizations advocating for women rights not to speak on their behalf, alleging “they will marry polygamous men if they can.”The niqab woman, together with 30 other women had gathered at a mosque.
Some of them are married to men who already have three wives, and some to monogamous men.
Mullah Omar Daratwye had spoken about polygamy to them at the hall.
The cleric had thanked God for being able to persuade some women to consent to their husband marrying another woman.The cleric’s speech was aired by a local television channel.
The mullah, men and women at the hall are seen lashing out at women advocacy groups and clerics who have spoken against polygamy in the past.“We are implementing God’s decree and you implement Devil’s decrees,” Mullah Omar had said.Mullah Omar is a cleric at Shifa mosque in the town of Daratw at the outskirts of Erbil.
He spoke about the reason why he had gathered the women in the mosque and said: “The program was not against any organization of cleric.
I invited the women in order to defend ourselves.
Women advocacy groups have often caused problems for polygamous couples by spotlighting the phenomenon.
They shouldn’t interfere in the lives of women who are okay with their husband marrying another woman.”According to the instructions of the ministry of religious affairs, mosques should not be used for activities or meetings.“We haven’t received any instructions from the ministry of religious affairs advising us not to hold meetings in mosques.
After all, we gathered at the hall used to host events – a hall used for all occasions.
We are committed to the decisions of the ministry of religious affairs,” Mullah Omar said.Mullah Omar himself has three wives.
He spoke about clerics who have preached against polygamy, saying they have strayed from religion and are hired by Israeli: “People or clerics saying polygamy is against the sharia law have strayed from religion.
By doing so, they offend me and 25, 000 other people in Erbil who have either two, three or four wives.”“We will lodge a law suit against this mullah if he intended to defame.
He is not in a position to speak about women advocacy groups and accuse them of doing nothing.
We will answer him with evidence.
We have evidence documenting that women union resolved nearly 2257 social cases over the past eight years,” Vian Sleman, head of Kurdistan women union, told Rudaw.She called on the ministry of religious affairs to prevent clerics from using mosques to defame women advocacy groups.“Broadcasting such a television program is a violation of the ministry of culture laws.
The ministry of culture should investigate this matter.
We will for a sharia committee to investigate the matter if a cleric or organization files a complaint against this mullah,” Nabaz Ismael, the spokesperson of the ministry of religious affairs, told Rudaw.“The ministry of religious affairs prevents any activity or meeting to be held in mosques without prior approval of the ministry,” he added.
Mullah Omar is 40 and has three wives and eight children.“I will get married to the fourth wife if God has set this as my fate,” Mullah Omar had told Rudaw.