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Abbas’ advisor gives examples of when “a woman's testimony is insufficient” because of her “delicate nature”


Official PA TV program Horizons, on attitudes regarding women

Supreme Shari’ah Judge, Abbas’ advisor on Religious and Islamic Affairs, and Chairman of the Supreme Council for Shari'ah Justice Mahmoud Al-Habbash:
"Considering the true and normal difference between men and women – physically and mentally, in bodily and mental aspects… In some situations, a woman's testimony is insufficient, because in this situation a woman's mental nature cannot basically provide testimony… When a murder takes place… and suddenly one man stabs another man with a knife. You – in light of your nature as a man…will hurry to save the one who is stabbed, or to intervene, and you will not cover your face with your hands in order to protect your eyes from this gruesome sight. However, when a woman sees such a situation, what does she do? She covers her face, as her mental nature cannot bear this… In some situations a woman's testimony is insufficient as she is incapable – due to her wonderful and delicate nature – she is incapable of ascertaining and confirming the crime about which she is testifying… In testimony about adultery, for example, four witnesses [are required]. It is the physiological and mental nature of a man that if he sees two people committing adultery he will stare and check it out. A woman – due to her shy, calm, delicate, and chaste nature – if she sees such a sight she will turn away out of shame. Therefore, she needs someone who will support her testimony, because if she testifies, she only glanced and turned away, while a man will stare and is willing to observe. Of course this does not imply a flaw in either men or women."
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