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 An Ariana Media Publication 08/28/2016
 Shariah "only source" of law in Afghanistan


KABUL - Islamic shariah law is the 'only source' of legislation in Afghanistan, deputy chief justice Fazel Ahmad Manawi has declared.

"The only source of legislation in Afghanistan is Islamic shariah law," Justice Manawi said late Friday, outlining the major recommendations made by a council of 75 Islamic leaders from across the country.

The three-day council, or shura, organised by the Supreme Court, ended on Wednesday.

A commission is currently scrutinising a new draft constitution finalised last month. Commissioners are also conducting a public education and consultation campaign to gather views on the new constitution, which will replace the current 1964 one.

Several Western countries have expressed unease at the prospect of a constitution and legal system based on Islamic law.

"Islam guarantees women's right to education and participation in political life, but they should dress in an Islamic manner and observe hijab," the shura decided, according to Justice Manawi.

Under hijab women must cover all of their body apart from the face, hands and feet.

Under the ousted Taleban regime women were forced to wear the all-covering 'burqa' or risk punishment by the religious police. Television was also banned by the militia and the media harshly censored.

"Islamic values should be taken into consideration in the media. If the Press publish something which is considered a crime under Islamic law, they will be considered criminals and questioned," he said.

The shura said followers of other religions were free to practise their beliefs according to the law.

"All forms of discrimination are condemned. Islam is the basis of national unity."

The shura also recommended the government avoid any un-Islamic actions and pay attention to Islamic and Afghan values.

Chief Justice Mawlawi Fazel Hadi Shinwari called the council, whose recommendations are not binding in law.

The Supreme Court earlier this year banned cable television as 'un-Islamic'. The only cable channels currently available, albeit unofficially, are news channels.

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