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All Praise be to Almighty Allah.
Blessing and peace be on His Prophet Muhammad
after whom there is no prophet, and on all those
who followed his way of guidance.
The Islamic Fiqh Council during its 4th session held at the general secretariat of the Muslim World League in Makkah Mukarramah between 7-17 Rabi Al-Aakhir 1401H took note of objections by several Islamic societies in Singapore over the contents of the charter on women’s rights to allow the Muslim male and female to marry with persons who do not believe in the religion of Islam and adopted unanimously the following resolution:
First: The marriage of a male Unbeliever with a female Muslim is absolutely prohibited and the Islamic jurisprudence scholars have full agreement on this, because the rulings of the Islamic Shari’ah in this regard are very clear, as Almighty Allah says: “…And do not marry (your girls) to unbelievers until they become Believers…” (Qur’an, 2:221) and as He also says: “…If you ascertain that they are Believers, then send them not back to the Unbelievers. They are not lawful (wives) for the Unbelievers, nor are the (Unbelievers) lawful (husbands) for them. But pay the Unbelievers what they have spent (on their dower).” (Qur’an, 60:10)
The repetition and emphasis on prohibition of relationship between the Believer female and Unbeliever male in the above-mentioned verse: “They are not lawful (wives) for the Unbelievers, nor are the (Unbelievers) lawful (husbands) for them.” (Qur’an, 60:10) as well as the order that the Unbeliever husband is paid what he has spent on his wife on her embracing the religion of Islam as mentioned in the same verse:“But pay the Unbelievers what they have spent (on their dower).” (Qur’an, 60:10) so that he does not suffer the double loss of the marital relationship with his wife and money that he spent on her.
If the Unbeliever wife who is married to an Unbeliever husband becomes prohibited for him on her embracing the religion of Islam and is unlawful for him, then how is it allowed that an Unbeliever man marries a Believer woman? However, Almighty Allah has allowed the marriage of such Believer woman with the Believer man after the expiry of her Iddat period as mentioned in the following verse: “… And there will be no blame on you if you marry them on payment of their dower to them…” (Qur’an, 60:10)
Second: It is not allowed in the same way that the Believer male marries an Unbeliever female as Almighty Allah says: “Do not marry Unbeliever women until they become Believers…” (Qur’an, 2:221) and He says: “…But hold not to the guardianship of the Unbeliever women.” (Qur’an, 60:10)
Omar Ibn Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) divorced his two Unbeliever wives when this verse of the Qur’an was revealed. The Muslim scholar Ibn Qudamah Al-Hanbali stated that there is no difference on prohibition of the Unbeliever women’s marriage with the Muslim man. Women from People of the Book can marry the Muslim men and there is no difference among the Muslim scholars on this issue except the Imamites who are of the view that such marriage is prohibited. However, it is better for a Muslim not to marry a woman who belongs to People of the Book, when there are the Muslim women.
Sheikh Al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said that it is unpleasant to marry women from People of the Book if the Muslim women are available. This is also the opinion of Sheikh Al-Qadhi.
The majority of the Muslim scholars subscribe to the view of the Second Caliph, Omar Ibn Al-Khattab, (may Allah be pleased with him) who told those marrying women from People of the Book to divorce them and they did so except Hudhayfah, who declined to divorce his wife however, he divorced her later, because when a Muslim marries a woman from People of the Book, he may incline to her likings and perhaps the child born from them may follow her way.
Chairman, Islamic Fiqh Council
Abdullah Ibn Muhammad Ibn Humaid
President, Supreme Judicial Council
Deputy Chairman, Islamic Fiqh Council
Muhammad Ali Al-Harakan
Secretary-General, Muslim World League
Abdul Aziz Ibn Abdullah Ibn Baz
General President, Research, Ifta, Da’wah and Guidance
Saleh Ibn Othaimeen
Muhammad Mahmood Al-Sawwaf
Muhammad Shadhli Al-Neifer
Muhammad Abdullah Al-Subaiel
Abul Hassan Ali Al-Nadwi
Abdul Quddoos Hashemi
Muhammad Rasheed Qabbani
Hasanain Muhammad Makhloof
Abu Bakr Joomi
Muhammad Salem Abdul Wadood
Mahmood Sheith Khattab