Source: The Washington Post
RABAT, Morocco — Last month, Asma Lamrabet, a well-known Moroccan feminist, resigned from her position at the Mohammedan League of Scholars, where she headed a center of women’s studies in Islam. She was pushed to resign, she explained in a statement, by the backlash over her support for a demand that remains controversial in the Arab and Muslim world: an equal share for women.
In Muslim countries, laws governing inheritance are derived from verses in the Quran; men generally receive larger, sometimes double, the shares that women get. Distant male relatives can supersede wives, sisters and daughters, leaving women not just bereaved but also destitute.
Raising the issue of inheritance and inequality has long been considered blasphemous. When Tunisia’s modernizing first president, Habib Bourguiba, did so in 1974, he was targeted by a fatwa from a Saudi cleric and forced to backtrack.
Yet recently, in several North African countries, the debate over equality in inheritance has been picking up steam.