“No separate law for Muslims” says OutRage!
London – Thursday, 8 September 2005
12 Noon – 2pm
Canadian High Commission
LONDON – Human rights campaigners and refugees from Islamist persecution will protest against proposals for the introduction of Sharia law in the Canadian province of Ontario.
The proposals will allow arbitration, based on Sharia law, in family and domestic disputes, governing issues such as inheritance, child custody and so on.
Thursday’s protest will take place outside the Canadian High Commission in London.
The “no Sharia law” demo is being supported by gay human rights group OutRage! and one of the keynote speakers is OutRage! organiser, Peter Tatchell.
“OutRage! opposes the introduction of Sharia law in Canada, Britain, or anywhere else. It is wrong in principle to create a separate, segregated legal system for Muslims. It is a form of legal apartheid to treat Muslims and non-Muslims differently,” said Peter Tatchell of gay human rights group OutRage!
He is one of the speakers at Thursday’s protest against the introduction of Sharia law in Canada. Other speakers include refugees from Sharia law in Iran and Iraq.
“In a democratic society, everyone should be subject to the same laws and have the same rights and protections, without any discrimination,” added Mr Tatchell.
“OutRage! supports the struggle of liberal, progressive Muslims to who oppose Sharia law and want the Muslim community to enjoy the same freedom as everyone else.
“We fear the introduction of Sharia law in Canada, even in the limited circumstances of family law, could adversely affect the rights of Muslim women with regard to property ownership, inheritance, divorce and child custody.
“The new Canadian system would be voluntary, but many Muslim women will come under pressure from their husbands, families and communities to submit to the jurisdiction of Sharia religious courts, where women do not have the same rights as men. This would be a huge setback for women’s rights and a tragic betrayal of Muslim women,” said Mr Tatchell.
Note: On 11 September 2005, the Ontario government announced it was dropping plans to allow Sharia law.