UK: Muslim couples must get a civil wedding at the same time as a Sharia ceremony in future

Muslim couples should be legally required to have a civil marriage in addition to an Islamic ceremony, a government-ordered review of Sharia law concluded today.

The measure would mean more women had protection under family law and would face ‘less discriminatory practices’, the independent assessment said.

It would bring Islamic weddings into line with religious Christian and Jewish weddings, the review said.

The Government has refused recommendations that would formalise Sharia councils in Muslim communities.

The report said banning Sharia councils was not ‘viable’ because they were fulfilling an important role and called for them to be regulated instead.

But ministers have said they will not do anything to formalise a secondary legal system in Britain.

The intent is good, allow Muslim women a legal avenue beyond the Sharia councils which are typically discriminatory. In the end however it’s a case of closing the barn door after the horse has fled. Sharia courts should never have been sanctioned to begin with.

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