The following is an archived copy of a message sent to the CASI Analysis List run by Cambridge Solidarity with Iraq.
Views expressed in this archived message are those of the author, not of Cambridge Solidarity with Iraq (CASI).
[Main archive index/search] [List information] [CASI Homepage]
[ This message has been sent to you via the CASI-analysis mailing list ] Dear Cathy and list Cathy Aitchison said in her interesting mail: > Western media reported that thousands demonstrated against the Coalition's > plans to set up a government for Iraq by appointments rather than elections. > So far, so good. > > But little was said in the mainstream Western media (except in the Financial > Times and Washington Post) about one of the actions of the current > US-selected Governing Council which sparked such strong feeling: > > - namely, the repealing of the 1958 (or 1959) unified secular Personal > Status Law (or Family Law) under which, I understand, men and women have > equal status, in favour of instituting Sharia law Unfortunately, the 'strong feeling' manifested by the thousands who demonstrated against the appointments proposal was expressed in support of Grand Ayatollah Sistani, a leading expert in the Shi'i interpretation of the Sharia. They were most definitely NOT demonstrating against the repealing of the unified secular Personal Status Law. In fact the demonstrations were largely organised by SCIRI and al-Dawa, who are represented on the IGC and were almost certainly behind the decree. Although Dan is right to point out that the legal status of this decree is doubtful it still has its significance. The IGC as I understand it is charged with laying out basic principles for the governance of Iraq until such time as a constitution is agreed, and there is an assumption that principles agreed by the IGC will have a good chance of entering into the final constitution. Unified secular principles of family law are among the things some of us might have hoped would feature in the principles and final constitution. But it now looks as though this is unlikely. Even if the Americans force it into the principles its still unikely to make it into the constitution since Sistani has alrady established the principle that the constitution can only be agreed by a democratically elected body, ie a body susceptible to the inluence of the ayatollahs. Best wishes Peter _______________________________________ Sent via the CASI-analysis mailing list To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-analysis All postings are archived on CASI's website at http://www.casi.org.uk