Are forced marriages allowed in Islam?

are forced marriages allowed in islam?

Forced marriages are haram in Islam.

Shariah

From a legal point of view the Islamic marriage contract requires 4 conditions to be fulfilled to be valid. The very first of these is the consent of the couple – the bride and the groom. (The other three are the consent of the bride’s guardian (Wali) if she has never been married before, mahr (the groom’s wedding gift to the bride as mutually agreed by both parties) and a witness.

Sunnah

The evidence that marriages cannot be forced is clear from the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace be on him).

There is an authentic narration by ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that a girl came to her and said:

‘My father married me to his brother’s son so that he might raise his own status thereby, and I was unwilling.’

She said: ‘Sit here until the Prophet (peace be on him) comes.’

Then the Messenger of Allah (peace be on him) came, and I told him (what she had said). He sent word to her father, calling him, and he left the matter up to her. She said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, I accept what my father did, but I wanted to know whether women have any say in the matter.’ (Nasa’i)

This shows that women have the right to agree or disagree to marry a person. In this instance, the woman agreed to her father’s choice, but by asking the Prophet (peace be on him) what her position was in this situation, it was established that marriage requires the consent of the bride and the groom.

The wife, not her father, will have to live with the husband so he cannot force her into a situation where she is uncomfortable or unhappy.

On another occasion, in an authentic hadith, it was narrated from Buraidah that a girl came to the Prophet (peace be on him) and said:

‘My father married me to his brother’s son so that he might raise his status thereby.’

The Prophet (peace be on him) gave her the choice, and she said:

‘I approve of what my father did, but I wanted women to know that their fathers have no right to do that.’ ” (Ibn Majah)

Abdullah ibn Abbas narrated that a virgin came to the Prophet (peace be on him) and mentioned that her father had married her against her will, so the Prophet (peace be on him) allowed her to exercise her choice. (Abu Dawoud)

Abuse of power and position

It is an abuse of power to force a daughter to marry against her wishes.

The prophetic path is one of gentleness, mercy and kindness.

Illegal and punishable

Forcing someone to marry against her wishes is detrimental to the well-being of the woman and is a violation of the rights she has been granted in Islam.

Forced marriage is also against UK law and carries a prison sentence of up to 7 years.

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Shaykh Haytham Tamim is the founder and main teacher of the Utrujj Foundation. He has provided a leading vision for Islamic learning in the UK, which has influenced the way Islamic knowledge is disseminated. He has orchestrated the design and delivery of over 200 unique courses since Utrujj started in 2001.His extensive expertise spans over 30 years across the main Islamic jurisprudence schools of thought. He has studied with some of the foremost scholars in their expertise; he holds some of the highest Ijazahs (certificates) in Quran, Hadith (the Prophetic traditions) and Fiqh (Islamic rulings). His own gift for teaching was evident when he gave his first sermon to a large audience at the age of 17 and went on to serve as a senior lecturer of Islamic transactions and comparative jurisprudence at the Islamic University of Beirut (Shariah College).He has continued to teach; travelling around the UK, Europe and wider afield, and won the 2015 BISCA award (British Imams & Scholars Contributions & Achievements Awards) for Outstanding Contribution to Education and Teaching.