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26 October, 2005

Seditious shotgun wedding

Here's something to strike terror into nearly every expat, save nuns and True-Love-Waits fanatics:

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A reader from the USA asks: I became pregnant with my now-husband’s baby in the US and because of his job was unable to return to the UAE to marry quickly. I returned and he followed. We married in Dubai when I was 36 weeks pregnant and the baby was born two weeks later. He’s returned to the US and now I’m trying to get the birth certificate and there are questions being raised because of the date of our marriage. I thought that everything should be fine as long as we were married before the birth. And I thought that our marriage was the correct course of action. Was I wrong?

You got pregnant before marriage, which according to the law of the country constitutes a crime, despite the fact that you got married when you were 36 weeks into the pregnancy. In my opinion the hospital may refer the matter to the public prosecution and you might face legal charges.
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Something totally legal in your home country can, according to lawyers, still get you prosecuted here. What next, mandatory virginity tests for all single females arriving in the UAE?

The UAE has no business interfering in another country's sovereign laws. What would the reaction be if a UAE national with two or more wives, legal here, visited America and was prosecuted for bigamy?

Labels: ,

59 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well I dont see anything wrong here. Every country has its laws. Every person should try to learn the law of the land they are in. Take the UK for example. An asian friend of mine in London was not allowed to share a room at a hotel with a colleague, since they were both males, and they suspected them of being homosexual. Had the colleague been a female, the hotel would have allowed them to spend the night together. Who knows, they might have even provided them with a condom! Whats more, laws differ even within a country so much that something legal becomes illegal in another place, eg gay marriages in USA. Imagine a gay couple legally married in one state and illegal in another.

26 October, 2005 13:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you're saying your Asian friend was in London I should point out that being gay is not against the law in the UK and as such, this is a terrible example.

It's an interesting situation. If the child was conceived in the USA, should the couple be prosecuted in the UAE?

26 October, 2005 14:20  
Blogger samuraisam said...

It is very good of the government to protect us from the evil's of immorality. of course, its only good if the rules apply to women.

I would also like to thank Etisalat for bringing me up in a clean safe enviroment where my parents obviously failed.

Pretty soon we won't even have to make decisions. The government will distribute "magic 8" balls to everyone, whether the question is "shall i lay seed in thy neighbour" or "should i lock this evil housemaid in the closet because she cheated on me and told my wife?" or how about "I was just going 300 kmph and i ran over that unconcious gentlemen 70 metres back, should i drive on?", we won't even have to think any more pretty soon.

26 October, 2005 14:21  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous #1, my guess is that your Asian friend was either trying to share a room without paying (voilating the central tenet of both Dubai and London, which is to say: Do Not Cost Me Money), or the hotel's proprietors were non-English (perhaps Indian) and had a prurient turn of mind. He was at the wrong hotel in any case; the best turn a blind eye toward anyone you may take into your room ;-}

26 October, 2005 14:50  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

in my opinion, about 80% of the expat community in the UAE are completely ignorant of the UAE laws. That article is a good example!

26 October, 2005 14:58  
Blogger secretdubai said...

It's not just ignorance of the law, though. How do know when you start a family with your partner in a western country that you may one day get a posting in the Middle East?

The fact that they were prepared to get married out of repsect to UAE law should be enough. What they did before that, in a foreign country, is none of the UAE's bloody business.

26 October, 2005 15:12  
Blogger samuraisam said...

anonymous @ 14:58

the problem isnt whether people know the laws, its people not knowing how they are applied. their is no clear communication about when and how the rules apply.

It's good to keep an open mind, and be aware that you can be arrested for anything provided you are a dick head, keeping slightly conservative is a good idea, just be aware of who is around you, and who can hear what you say and you should be fine. If many expats did know most of the laws, they'd probably not like living here.

26 October, 2005 15:19  
Blogger Emirati said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

26 October, 2005 15:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

is that a kid a bastard(out of wed lock) or is it a legal kid (married at 38 weeks-jumping the que) or is the kid illegal?

26 October, 2005 15:31  
Blogger secretdubai said...

Emirati - those US laws are ludicrous, I am surprised they haven't been struck down. I've read of 18 year old guys going on the sex offenders register for having a 17 year old girlfriend (which is legal in many US states and most of Europe).

What's the point of putting someone on a sex offender register who clearly isn't a sex offender? All it does is weaken the purpose of the register, and give real paedos an believable excuse: "yeah, I'm on it, but my girlfriend was 17" when actually his victim was nine.

26 October, 2005 15:34  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laws in the UAE?? The laws are appled at their discretion. It is all about who you know to get by the "Laws".

26 October, 2005 15:57  
Blogger Keefieboy said...

I don't think that the UAE should prosecute people for things they did legally outside this country. This can include pregnancy, drug use (codeine, among others), doing 75 in a 40 zone.

It's OK to say people should do their homework before they come here, but how exactly would you do that? Where do you find accurate and up-to-date information on these arcana?

I've lived in Dubai for 12 years, and I do try to stay on the right side of the law, but I had no idea until a year ago that codeine was a controlled drug here!

26 October, 2005 16:02  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Emirati, some clarification on the laws would be good then.

I have a 3 year old son, my partner is not married to me and in the UK still. If we got married and she came over, would this technically be illegal as the child was conceived out of wedlock?

26 October, 2005 16:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Woo hoo.

2 new posts at the homepage of idiocy

The most prestigious 10MB on the net

SD you need to start charging for ad space

26 October, 2005 16:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why so strict? So you are not supposed to make kids before marriage. Being so restricted, are all UAE girls being able to get married at the expected age? What happen if they are left-over (spinster, old maid, etc) since no men were interested in them? Basically they have no future?
Single women over 30 are in difficult position even in the West. What about in UAE?

26 October, 2005 16:52  
Blogger CG said...

One of the reasons that I am glad that my kids go to school here in the UAE...because there is nobody in their classes whose parents are unmarried and very small amounts of single-parent families. Of course my kids will know about this kind of thing when they are older but I don't want them to ever think that this is the 'norm'. If you grow up with it then it is so so acceptable.

26 October, 2005 17:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, so people have a problem with UAE laws - I am not a big fan of some laws either. But, in this particular case, I would like to hear everyones' views on conceiving before marriage (SD, samuraisam, Anon. et al).

As a Muslim I am just interested in knowing how people from the West view pre-marital intercourse and conceiving before marriage. Is the act in itself identified as "wrong" whereas this act has become a norm? So much so that people don't consider it to be wrong anymore?

Don't get me wrong, but a lot of wrongs end up becoming norms of societies with time (moreso in the Western world). But I really want to know if this act is even considered bad/wrong anymore.

26 October, 2005 18:55  
Blogger samuraisam said...

IMHO, if you do something in the privacy of your own home it should stay there.
none of anyones business. if you want to be unreligious so be it, it really shouldnt be anyones business until it affects them, like eating in ramadan, i can understand laws on that. but these seem a bit ridiculous.
also i personally dont think its right to force any beliefs upon anyone.

26 October, 2005 19:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon. at 18.55

The key point is that in many societies pre-marital intercourse and children born out of wedlock is NOT wrong. Hence, it is not that something "wrong" becomes the norm, but that it simply is not considered wrong.

Regardless where you look (Middle East, US, or Europe), the institution of marriage and the stigma - or lack of stigma - associated with children who are conceived and/or born of unmarried mothers and fathers continue to change.

My question to you would be: Why is it wrong?

26 October, 2005 19:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, so clearly it is not a wrong act according to some. I asked because according to all major religions, that the people of The West susbcribe to, consider this act as wrong. Indeed, this was deemed as a socially unacceptable act even in the West some time ago.

But, fair enough, if people over there now think that this is not wrong then so be it. A follow-up to this would be: If having a child before marriage isn't a "wrong" act then certainly there is no need for the institution of marriage. So why even have the concept of marriage? In the particular case at hand, why did the couple have to get married to "legitimize" their act? Or did they just exchange vows because marriage is a spiritual thing and having kids is just a peripheral consequence of this spiritual bonding?

Please elaborate; your views are certainly enlightening.

26 October, 2005 19:31  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about love? I see no one mentions love? How about when two people that are very much in love bring a child into the World? Wrong too, huh?

26 October, 2005 20:16  
Blogger black feline said...

madam SD,

i have read the piece 61 times..correct me if im wrong..but me think both the poor lady and the hubby are not US citizens! they are in fact locals..returned to Dubai.. got married under the local laws here...its all about the local birth certificate for the baby and her understanding of the date of her marriage b4 birth ..unfortunately under the Sharia law (i think, dont stone me pls), pregnancy b4 marriage is a crime..

26 October, 2005 20:38  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I must agree with Black Feline. Why would two US citizens rush to the UAE to get married? I think the key phrase is "was unable to return to the UAE."

But Secret Dubai's point is a good one. It's generally (but perhaps not always) bad policy for countries to try and prosecute things that occurred outside of their territories. Having said that, lots of countries do it. The U.S., for example, makes it illegal for its citizens to travel to another country to have sex with minors. (I think this is one of the better excuses for exercising extraterritorial jurisdiction.)

As for the U.S. prosecuting Muslims with multiple wives for bigamy, the U.S. has long looked the other way, at least with respect to diplomatic visitors. When a Muslim with two wives gets officially posted to the U.S., the first wife typically gets a visa as the wife while the second wife gets a visa as a "housekeeper" or a "nanny." It's sort of a "don't ask, don't tell" policy, officially illegal but allowed as a practical matter.

26 October, 2005 21:21  
Blogger CG said...

This is a hard one really...and I do not think we can all agree. I like the laws that are in place here, and it is an Islamic country therefore I believe we should not be so shocked by this.
IMO it is more shocking to conceive a child out of wedlock than to frown apon the laws here. After all it is all about protecting the children and giving them rights.
We all want our children to be accepted by any societies they may end up living in, there is enough division caused by nationality/relgion etc, surely we should not invite further comlications to our childrens lives.


CG

26 October, 2005 21:27  
Blogger John B. Chilton said...

It's not our country. We don't write the laws, we just have to stay on the right side of them. (Point taken r.e. codeine.)

Related word of advice. Do not put on your resume "in ad hoc long term relationship with ..." if you expect your potential employer to seek a work visa for you. Unless you merely are seeking to amuse and bemuse, and not earnestly seeking employment.

It's been done.

26 October, 2005 21:34  
Blogger monkey16667 said...

Dubai Blog

When just one post is not enough.

5 new posts in 15 minutes.

A special thanks to SD for her tolerant view to my shameless popularity drive.


Oh by the way: My 2 cents on this topic.

This act is out of the jurisdiction of the UAE. Plain and simple. The UAE law has no say over this instance.



But on the broader sense of the argument.

It is not a matter of what is wrong or not. It is a matter of whether anybody has a right to decide if 2 people decide to have a kid out of wedlock or not. As far as I am concerned when it comes to issues like these (children out of wedlock, gays etc) judgement cannot be passed. Its not like these so called moral and social watchdogs are saints.

26 October, 2005 21:34  
Blogger monkey16667 said...

Dubai Blog

26 October, 2005 21:36  
Blogger CG said...

Oh to live in a country where you can have freedom of speech, marry your same-sex partner, and then go and have a child out of wedlock....
NO, thankyou.
But IF I was residing in a 'do what you like' country then I would keep my mouth shut.
People come here to make money. when the days of taxes and worse arrive they will all run away, leaving us with a changed system.

26 October, 2005 21:56  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Many countries exercise their right and put on trial people who commit crimes in another country. Take the case of Saddam Hussein. He committed crimes in Iraq. It took the US 20-25 years to realise that, and now he is being tried in the US, according to US laws for "crimes against humanity". In any case, no matter which country you are in, the excuse "I did not know the law" does not go well with judges at all.

26 October, 2005 22:26  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SD and others: Take the case of a 20-year old male married to a 16-year old female (legal in UAE). If the couple went to USA, and the girl had a baby, wont her husband be charged with "having sex with a minor"?

26 October, 2005 22:50  
Blogger CG said...

not if the minor was his wife ;)

26 October, 2005 22:59  
Anonymous Minkey Chief said...

To Anon@1450, just automatically blame it all on the brownies, wot?

26 October, 2005 23:25  
Blogger BrainSyke said...

DUBAI — The Indian government has decided to introduce a new rule under which companies have to attest employment offer letters with the respective embassies and consulates when labourers, who need an emigration clearance to work abroad, are hired.

The new rule aims at curbing malpractices by recruiting agencies and companies. It will come into effect from December 31 this year, a top official in India disclosed to your favourite No.1 newspaper Khaleej Times yesterday.
-Khaleej Times.

http://khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle.asp?xfile=data/theuae/2005/October/theuae_October743.xml§ion=theuae&col=
Notice the last sentence.

26 October, 2005 23:51  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hear ! Hear !

SD an excellent post. The UAE stands to open up itself to international ridicule if this matter is ever prosecuted.

I can understand prosecuting "adulters" caught in the act, but something like this is just ridiculous.

27 October, 2005 00:10  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

when i took my family here the uae emabassy back home refused to authenticate my son's birth certificate because he was not born nine months after the date we got married. the lady said that it's against the uae law but it wont be a problem getting my son's residence visa....i guess they just dont want to be part of my 'immoral' past.

27 October, 2005 10:17  
Anonymous el condo said...

"Anonymous said...

Woo hoo.
2 new posts at the homepage of idiocy..."

I agree. That's what it's becoming. Can't people read? 34 comments so far and none of them sticks to the FACTS as described in the post.

1. The indication is that both are UAE residents, not necessarily nationals.

2. Nowhere is it mentioned that they are under prosecution, or that the government is planning to. All it said was that some questions were raised. But naturally. People anywhere can add 2 and 2.

3. I'm not a lawyer, but:
I don't think "becoming pregnant" prior to marriage is against the law here. Unlawful sexual relations are proscribed, therefore a pregnancy without marriage would point to the fact that such relations took place. This would be a basis for prosecution provided the "sexual relations" took place in this country, where it is against the law. The couple can easily prove that they were in the US when the baby was conceived, which is not unlawful there.

4. In order to sponsor the baby (which should be done within 3 months of birth (I think) the man has to prove (through documentation) that he is the father. For that, a birth certificate is required, naming him as the father. This is issued by the hospital where the baby is born (assuming it is a government hospital). Normally, when the pregnancy is registered at the hospital, the father's details are asked for, and that is when the marriage certificate will be required. In this case, obviously the pregnancy was well advanced and the date of marriage was not much earlier. Hence the "questions". However, a little earnest talking and perhaps a bit of running around should sort out the matter.

5. Since the two have US connections, it ought to make things that much easier. If they were brownies (like me), I can understand they would have much more of a problem, though there would still be no effective legal case.

I once again draw your readers' attention to the fact that there is no mention that they are being prosecuted, or that there is any move to do so.

Much ado about nothing.

Thanks

27 October, 2005 10:19  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"What would the reaction be if a UAE national with two or more wives, legal here, visited America and was prosecuted for bigamy?"

They have to live in Utah to get away with it. oh and be a mormon

27 October, 2005 10:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the other anonymous.

You'll find that the Church of England no longer considers conceiving before marriage a sin.

You may also find that marriage was originally a way of passing property and land rights from one generation to the other and nothing else.

So with modern legislation, there is no reason for marriage.

27 October, 2005 10:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

el condo - the lawyer (as it is from the feature 'ask the law') states that it is a crime to get pregnant before marriage and as such you could be prosecuted for it.

This is what people were referring to. It is against the law.

The letter, however, is ambiguous and we don't know if the people asking the question are UAE nationals or not. If they are it makes a huge difference.

27 October, 2005 10:32  
Anonymous el condo said...

I accept that the lawyer said that...and that the hospital may refer the case for prosecution. It could be a private hospital. It seems they did not seek the required documentation until after the baby was born. (At government hospitals, the marriage certificate is a requirement if the pregnancy is to be registered at all. Only after that will pre-natal care be given.)

Also to another anonymous, who said:

"...when i took my family here the uae emabassy...refused to authenticate my son's birth certificate because he was not born nine months after the date we got married. the lady said that it's against the uae law..."

Sometimes information given by embassies (and other official sources) regrettably may not be entirely reliable. A lot of babies are born prematurely, including in the UAE...I have a friend whose child was born in the seventh month...criteria of this kind are specious to say the least.

As far as expatriates not knowing the law is concerned, this is quite true...hardly anyone does, and that includes the departments concerned! Often decrees are issued and laws passed and announced in the newspapers, but the relevant departments have not received official notification from the authorities to implement them. The rules are also subject to constant change, review or withdrawal depending on the season, the weather and market conditions.

With regard to the current case, despite the lawyer saying that, I personally doubt that it will be brought to prosecution...it remains to be seen what will happen. Should there be prosecution, I trust it will be reported.

27 October, 2005 15:08  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had wanted to know from those (as my previous post suggested) who believe that pre-marriage sexual relations leading to pregnancy is OK, as to what their take on the institution of marriage was. I think I got 2 kinds of answers:

1- Such a conception of a child is a "personal" act and that governments or societies have no business in making it a crime or judging others.

2- Some "orthodoxies" have changed the concept of marriage and that having a child before marriage is no longer considered a sinful act.

As regards view 1, I guess I can only say that every act that is perceived as an offense can be viewed as a "personal" act - abortion being an example. If we stretch this logic a bit more then the state has no business in deciding and dictating punishments to a rapist or murderer either. Those acts are "personal" too. I am sure no one would like to support bestiality (having sex with animals) - or so I hope! Isn't that "personal" too? My point being, laws are needed and it is sad that people these days are so busy trying to change this basic concept of governance.

How far will we go in trying to change orthodox views that were made simply to protect us? Aren't we seeing how such sexual infidelity is leading to nuisances in our societies? Single mothers; dysfuntional families; confused and violent children; alarmingly rising divorce rates; infidelity amongst married couples; prostitution and the list just goes on.

I have to admit that even though my personal stand on this issue is that having sex before marriage is a deplorable act, I can still appreciate how this couple realized what they did and got married (in the best interest of this child and themselves)! Most times either such matters end up in the guy leaving the girl cold or couples agreeing to abort the child.

29 October, 2005 01:16  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is complete bullshit...what happens when a women is raped ?? so keeping the baby is not an option?? what if the mothers retarded?? there must be some loopholes in the law..even the biggest fundo's must accept that sometimes marriage - baby is not possible. So what happens to those babies??
Asides from that, in terms of sex there is no real arguing of the shariah laws premarital/extramarital sex is forbidden and will be punished. Otherwise what will a bunch of zealots straight out of the pit and the pendulum do for kicks?? like it or leave it.

29 October, 2005 05:55  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"So with modern legislation, there is no reason for marriage."
Huh? Is that why so many people are getting married, especially in the States. And you say that marriage was only a way to pass property, and nothing else. Where in the world did you get that information from? Marriage is a social institution. Passing property was not the only reason people got married. Marriage is a kind of protection for the woman and the child. Imagine a man planting his seed and running off without getting married. What would you have? Abortions, single families. The child would be denied a fathers name, and love. I ask a question, if pre-marital sex was a taboo, would we ever have such a debate on child abortions? Even in the US pre marital sex was considered a taboo, and things started changing as the country started getting more liberal, so much that today most people say "its personal". Well, then what is right or wrong. How about people having sex with their moms and fathers, and then saying, theres is nothing wrong in it, as long as they both agree to it?!!

29 October, 2005 10:29  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reading all these posts have been quite interesting.

Though my shelves are not stacked with books on UAE law, I do know certain things,i.e., you cannot be prosecuted for a crime unless there is proof that it was commited in the U.A.E. To further state my point I repeat something that I heard the other day. Even if you have say traces of marijuana (it stays in the body for 40-60 days) in your blood, if u can prove that it was not consumed in the U.A.E, they cannot jail you.(But yes you would b sent away) Please do not now bring the codeine incident to debate, coz she was clearly disoriented and acting funny, the very reason she was stopped and checked though she was just transiting.

Secondly, I think each nation to its own. If you dont like the laws of a country, sod off, no one has the right to judge anybody.

29 October, 2005 12:33  
Blogger samuraisam said...

anonymous, that is BS, try telling it to my friend who did some hashish in england along with his brother, yet they both rotted away in dubai prison for several months.

29 October, 2005 13:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanx samuraisam...
and i almost believed it and acted on it ;-)

29 October, 2005 13:34  
Anonymous el condo said...

This country and its society is developing and changing at a pace much faster than most nations have. The authorities (government) must function as regulatory agents for such change, and the pace at which it takes place.

The most significant, and best, agents of change are people (whether national or expatriate) who are willing to challenge and question the status-quo.

Telling them to "sod off" will not make this a better place to live.

29 October, 2005 15:37  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do agree to u el condo, but, you and I (I'm assuming)are here for the opportunities, and once they dry out (hopefully they won't), you and I will leave this place, without a single thought about it.

Simply because this is not home. So if they (the locals) change their laws (that has been followed for years) for us, it would be acceptance of our cultures from their sides that deems unparalleled appreciation.

But me, personally, if I was a local lawmaker, I would think in the following way:-

1. Would the change in laws make the expats feel at home, would the laws changed for them, make them stay since they feel at home.

2. And would the laws I change, change the structure of local society to a point where it loses its identity.

I think I understand these facts and eventhough, I hate majority of laws in this country from trade monopolies to liquor laws, I appreciate my monthly paycheck, and accept things as they are.

30 October, 2005 01:55  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Every country has its own laws which need to be followed whether you're an expat or whether you're a citizen of the country. Ignorance or "didn't know" doesn't have place in the law. The law in foreign country cannot be changed just because your home country doesn't have such a law!

Going forward, you might even say that as beer is being sold in supermarkets in US and UK, the same should be followed in the UAE, whereas its still illegal to sell beer / alcoholic products in a public place.

The FACT remains that if you want to remain in a country - follow the rules, else just leave the country!

30 October, 2005 10:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find this story odd as recently there was much coverage given to the fact that if you enter the UAE with an illegal drug in your blood stream you will not face any form of prosecution if you can prove you consumed the drug abroad.

I note the story above about hash...were these people tested positive upon entry to the UAE? Did they have any hash in their posession? Check back issues of the Gulf News because this was clearly covered some months ago.

30 October, 2005 10:32  
Blogger samuraisam said...

no, they didnt have anything on them, they had lived in dubai all their lives, and it was only 6-12 months back that it happened iirc.

30 October, 2005 11:12  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The issue with drugs was I believe 'codeine' Tracy, the Englishwoman who had a drug legal in the UK in her system when she entered the UAE. She was freed (eventually) because she managed to produce a doctors prescription from the UK. Had it been hash, she would have been doing four years.

30 October, 2005 11:14  
Anonymous el condo said...

"The law in foreign country cannot be changed just because your home country doesn't have such a law! ......
The FACT remains that if you want to remain in a country - follow the rules, else just leave the country!"

This is quite true.

The other option will be to spend some time as a "guest" of the authorities.

Whatever is discussed should be with the intention of betterment of the country and society as a whole, not because it's better for "ME, ME, ME!" This is why laws and so on are discussed in fora such as this one.

Opinion is important, and it may not be beneficial to kick people out of the country for having opinions.

This is what I mean when I say that people who seek to influence change through the free expression of ideas should preferably not be told to "sod off".

It has nothing to do with wanting to buy beer from Spinneys instead of MMI.

30 October, 2005 14:19  
Anonymous mohamed Elzubeir said...

The institution of marriage is an archaic one which cannot continue to function as a basis for a family in today's world. This is not because it is a bad institution to begin with, it is just outdated.

A married couple are two individuals who share their lives together, breed (optionally), etc. So do couples who live together, have children, etc. without 'marriage'.

It is a bit odd that the couple in this specific case had to endure the events that followed, though there obviously is more to it. As someone has pointed out, they were in fact locals. I have not checked this through, so I cannot claim it is an accurate statement.

The problem, as outlined by many, is that there is a complete breakdown of communication between the authorities and the public as to what the laws are _exactly_.

Keefieboy, not only is codeine a controlled substance, but having any controlled substance in your system is considered possession, go figure!

30 October, 2005 17:03  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

when it comes to more wives, you have a town in US were a person can & should marry his daughters. one example they showed on TV, an old man married to more than 12 of his daughters and again married to daughters from his daughters. It was like 36 in total of his own daughters. They do this just to protect their ancestry of Jesus as they claim. And couple of congressmen's are from this town which is protected for free religious practice law. This is SICK America.

31 October, 2005 13:55  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think they were locals. If she is a local she, she would go for birth certificate to UAE embassy NOT rushing back to the country. And plus her husband working in US. If she is a local she will know about that from her family. Probably an expat thinking if she got birth certificate maybe her son will get UAE citizenship.
Plus, how they got married when she was pregnant, they don't accept that for locals by court in UAE unless if they were expats...

conceiving before marriage most of time resulting to abortion. In US, you have 800,000 aborted infant per year that equal to the number of UAE national population. It is more like killing & throwing 800,000 babies to garbage per year.

31 October, 2005 15:58  
Anonymous Dubai-The City that would like to Care! said...

Yes Better leave the country now before you fall victim to another stupid Dubai Law. Didnt you know you get more respect if you run a company based on massive profits and slave labour.. than to raise a baby in a happy home with love and care from 2 kind and generuos parents.

04 November, 2005 20:31  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a female western expat. I moved to Dubai because I was tired of the anti-arab/foreigner-looking people tensions in Europe.
I respect the culture and the law in the UAE but when it comes to restrictions in my personal freedom (whether or not I want to have a child and get married) I think the UAE should make a clear distinction between Muslims and non-muslims. Bear in mind that not marrying (and atheism) is a normal part of our culture and as long as we don't offend people - why does this particular law apply to non-muslims??? I mean, why would people bother if I (a non-religious person) have a child- who would it affect?
The muslims can point fingers all they want and call me all the names they want - it would not bother me.
If I get pregnant - no matter where I am - I will probably get married, but both is a big economic commitment (remember, our parents don't plan our marriage and secure financial deals by virtue of the marriage), so I would like to avoid bith. I would hate to leave Dubai because of pregnancy because I would love any child of mine to grow up in a multi-cultural society. But this law is preventing such diversity.

Not only does this law balance on the edge of violating human rights (by prosecuting people for having a child an indirectly forcing people into marriage), but it doesn't in ANY way consider what is best for the child, by in cases, imprisoning the parents!

And finally, you should also remember that many locals and muslims in Dubai don't even respect their own laws: In most bars there is a local sitting and drinking. When walking outside my building at nighttime they will stop and try to come on to me, and ask me to get into their car - I'm sure it's not to show me their colletion of stamps...(and NO, i'm not dressing inappropriately - i'm just blonde!) Anyway, so much for your fameous middle eastern respect for women...

Another difficult part is to find a place to live. Me and my long term partner cannot afford living separately - nor do we wish to. So we will have to live with the fear that someone very muslim decides to report us...

If Dubai wants to make people of different cultures feel welcome - how about letting them live according to what they understand as being basic human rights.
Let the non-muslims live their 'decadent' lives trying to make a living, and barely getting by (because that's the price I pay by wanting to live in a place which supposedly should be tolerant) and hopefully one day, we will all meet half way...

30 October, 2007 16:52  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i definitely agree with you ms blonde!all issues have been out clearly and it was very well said! and yes it's very true, most of the locals are the ones who disrespect the women here (especially other asian races). how i wish one day these people realize how unreasonable their so called laws are!

13 January, 2008 20:23  

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