Saudi Arabia: Man threatens wife with divorce if she gets pregnant

Abu Dhabi: A woman has filed for divorce after her husband threatened her with divorce if she got pregnant, Saudi media reported.

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The woman complained that she had been married for three years, but her husband has always refused to have children and threatened her with divorce if she had a child.

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The woman also demanded a compensation for the injuries she sustained as a result, saying that her husband did not have any problems or legal impediments that prevent him from having children. “Rather, he refuses that on the pretext that he does not want to bear the responsibility of children and she did not discover that until after marriage,” she said.

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The woman said whenever she demanded to conceive, her husband attacked her and threatened to divorce her. “And when I demand be divorced, he refuses and sends me to my family’s home,” she said.

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Legal consultant Salih Al Huraibi said preventing a woman from having children without a legal obstacle or a problem that the husband suffers from is not permissible, as conceiving and having children is a legitimate right for the wife.

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In such a case, the woman is entitled to divorce because there is a defect in the man – inability to take responsibility as the wife claims.

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“Sharia came to preserve human progeny and preventing a woman from having children is contrary to that. With regard to demanding compensation for the psychological damage that she has experienced, this is up to the court to decide,” Al Huraibi said.

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Abdul Rahman Al Zahrani, a family counselor, explained: “The prohibition of childbearing is not permissible as long as the woman is able to do so, as this causes estrangement or hatred between the couple.

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“If a man forces his wife not to conceive, he will be exceeding the legal limits as long as he is able to do so, and he has no defect that prevents him from doing so. Likewise if the woman does not have a defect, then childbearing is a common right between the couple, and neither of the spouses has the right to monopolise this right.”

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