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PAKISTAN. COUNCIL OF ISLAMIC IDEOLOGY: RAPED WOMEN TO BE TREATED AS VICTIMS, NOT OFFENDERS

March 31, 2007: In a unanimous decision, the Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) ruled that a woman forced to have intercourse (zina-bil-jabr) should not be considered guilty of adultery, but should instead be viewed under the law as a victim of rape. The ruling de facto modifies the Hudood Ordinances and represents a great step forward in Pakistani Law.
“In this case [rape], the woman will be a complainant and the state will be bound to investigate, arrest the rapist and punish him if the crime is proved,” a CII press release said.
The council also stressed that rape (zina-bil-jabr) and consensual sex with someone other than a spouse (zina-bil-raza) are separate crimes and should be judged separately.
Until now the Hudood Ordinances adopted in 1979 by the military junta headed by General Zia-ul-Haq did not differentiate between adultery and rape. Under those regulations to prove her case, a woman had to produce four adult Muslim men as witnesses to testify before an Islamic court that they saw the forced sexual act.
If the victim failed to produce the witnesses she would be accused of adultery and sent to prison or lapidated.
The same rules said that evidence provided by non Muslims was not admissible before a court.
For some analysts the decision by the CII, which plays an advisory role and has great influence on Pakistani lawmakers but no formal power, represents an attempt by President Pervez Musharraf to regain support among moderate Pakistanis ahead of the upcoming parliamentary elections. (Sources: AsiaNews, 02/04/2007)

TANZANIA. FOUR TO HANG OVER KAPINGA`S MURDER
CHINA PROMISES NOT TO EXECUTE CITIZEN IF REPATRIATED FROM CANADA
LIBYA. PARLIAMENT CONDEMNS EU OVER HANDLING OF MEDICS' CASE
KAZAKHSTAN. HANDS OFF CAIN AT THE ROUND TABLE ON DEATH PENALTY, MORATORIUM AND INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT
IRAN. TWO HANGED FOR DRUG SMUGGLING
CHINA. MORE CAUTIOUSLY HANDLING OF DEATH PENALTY CASES URGED
IRAQ. TWO SENTENCED TO DEATH IN NASIRIYA
SAUDI ARABIA. TWO PAKISTANIS BEHEADED FOR DRUG TRAFFICKING
TUNISIA. JOURNALISTS PLEA FOR ABOLITION OF THE DEATH PENALTY
KENYA. MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDER OF GIRLFRIEND
TEXAS. MAN EXECUTED AFTER 25 YEARS ON DEATH ROW
HANDS OFF CAIN DEDICATES MARCH 8 TO IRANIAN WOMEN
ITALIAN SENATE APPROVED FULL ABOLITION OF THE DEATH PENALTY FROM ITS CONSTITUTION
IRAN HANGS FIVE MEN CONVICTED OF MURDER
UAE. PAKISTANI MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH IN SHARJAH
MALAYSIA. DEATH PENALTY FOR TERRORISM OFFENCES
GHANA FREES OR COMMUTES SENTENCES OF 1,206 PRISONERS
TEXAS (USA). ROBERT PEREZ EXECUTED FOR DOUBLE SLAYING
TEXAS HOUSE APPROVES DEATH PENALTY FOR HARDCORE REPEAT OFFENDERS
SAUDI ARABIA. MAN EXECUTED FOR MURDER
MOROCCO. HUGE AMNESTY SIGNALS HISTORIC DAY
IRAQ. EXECUTIONS PUT ON HOLD
FLORIDA (USA). COMMISSION RECOMMENDS CHANGES TO LETHAL INJECTION PROCESS
ITALY. D'ELIA, CONFIDENCE IN GOVERNMENT DEPENDS ON COMMITMENT TO MORATORIUM

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IRAN. HANDS OFF CAIN, REDUCTION OF DRUG EXECUTIONS BUT NUMBERS REMAIN WORRISOME
  HUMAN RIGHTS: DEMONSTRATION OF THE RADICAL PARTY BEFORE IRANIAN EMBASSY 14 FEBRUARY  
  BELARUS EXECUTES TWO CONVICTED MURDERERS  
  MALAYSIA: GOVT HALTS EXECUTION OF 1,200 DEATH ROW INMATES  
  JAPAN HANGS CULT LEADER SHOKO ASAHARA, 6 OTHERS FOR 1995 TOKYO SUBWAY SARIN ATTACK  
  SOMALIA - DEATH PENALTY AND TERRORISM  
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