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Divorced fathers protest against 'Mrs. Mubarak laws'.

Summary: Dozens of divorced men have set up makeshift tents outside the office building of the Grand Mufti of the Repbulic to protest against what they call the unjust present family laws that were approved during the Mubarak era and which prevent them from seeing their children.

The protesters gathered outside the Sheikh Ali Gomaa office, holding pictures of sons and daughters, whom they can not see thanks to what they branded as the Suzanne Mubarak laws, which raised the age of child custody to 15 years.

Islamic Shariaa sets the age of custody to seven years for boys and nine years for girls.

They say that the law allegedly enacted with backing of Mubarak's wife violates Islamic Shariaa and runs counter to the norms, customs, and nature of Egyptian society because it allows fathers to see children for three hours once a week only if they have a court ruling in their favour.

The protesters said they want this unjust law to be rescinded by the Grand Mufti allegedly because it violated Islamic Sharia, the base of all legislation dealing with personal status and inheritance issues in Egypt according to Article Two of the Constitution.

The angry fathers demanded an overhaul of procedures for seeing their children in accordance with Islamic law and tradition.

In Egypt, family matters are governed by Islamic law, meaning marriage and divorce are guided by religious rulings, traditions and social norms in the male-dominated society.

The fathers said that "the Suzanne Mubarak Laws," or el-Hanem's Laws, give women dominance in all post-divorce matters including child custody .

"El-Hanem laws are discriminatory and a violation of Sharia, and they should be abolished because they grant mothers custody of sons and daughters until age 15, one angry father said.

The provisions of the law was pushed through by Western countries despite stiff opposition and two years of rancorous debates by Muslim lawmakers?, ?another father said.

"These laws should be rescinded because they contradict the Sharia (Islamic law)," he said.

The Egyptian Gazette 2011 All rights reserved.

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Publication:The Egyptian Gazette (Cairo, Egypt)
Date:May 19, 2011
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