Ahmad Al-Zind is the head of the Egyptian Judges Social Club, which isn’t really a social club but a complicated way for Egyptian judges to avoid government control. So he’s officially unofficial and he was originally linked to Mubarak. Oh and the Egyptian Judges Social Club will be overseeing the referendum on the Islamist Constitution.
And he’s cheerfully talking about an Islamic system that would lead to the hands of thieves being chopped off and raped women requiring four witnesses.
Ahmad Al-Zind: The judges have a burning desire to instate shari’a laws regarding Islamic hudud punishments… When shari’a laws are implemented, they leave no room for bargaining. Any country that refrains from implementing these punishments is lacking in many ways. People should not fear the implementation of the hudud punishments, because this could be more lenient to the accused then ta’zir punishment [in which the judge has discretion].
Interviewer: How come?
Ahmad Al-Zind: Let’s consider, for example, the punishment for theft. For you to be able to apply the hudud punishment for theft, the thief must have stolen a certain amount, measured in gold… The value of the stolen goods must reach a certain amount. The crime must have been committed in a locked place. If someone leaves their gold or money in the living room and the maid takes it, she is not subject to the hudud punishment, because the money is considered to have been left unattended. The person who is sentenced to such punishments must have been provided with work and livelihood by society, so that he would not have to steal from others. After all that, if he still steals, his hand is chopped off.
Take, for example, the hudud punishment for fornication. Proving this crime in our time is practically impossible.
Interviewer: You need four witnesses…
Ahmad Al-Zind: Credible ones! Yet people terrify you with talk about the hudud.
The flip side of that is that a woman claiming to have been raped then needs four witnesses. And quite a few Muslim countries “prove” fornication and mete out punishment for it. Pakistan did it under Hudud laws.
About Daniel Greenfield
Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.
- “Moderate” Malaysia: Leader Adamant About Implementing extreme penalties under the sharia (atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com)