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Punishment for Rape in Islam
حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ يَحْيَى بْنِ فَارِسٍ، حَدَّثَنَا الْفِرْيَابِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا إِسْرَائِيلُ، حَدَّثَنَا سِمَاكُ بْنُ حَرْبٍ، عَنْ عَلْقَمَةَ بْنِ وَائِلٍ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، أَنَّ امْرَأَةً، خَرَجَتْ عَلَى عَهْدِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم تُرِيدُ الصَّلاَةَ فَتَلَقَّاهَا رَجُلٌ فَتَجَلَّلَهَا فَقَضَى حَاجَتَهُ مِنْهَا فَصَاحَتْ وَانْطَلَقَ فَمَرَّ عَلَيْهَا رَجُلٌ فَقَالَتْ إِنَّ ذَاكَ فَعَلَ بِي كَذَا وَكَذَا وَمَرَّتْ عِصَابَةٌ مِنَ الْمُهَاجِرِينَ فَقَالَتْ إِنَّ ذَلِكَ الرَّجُلَ فَعَلَ بِي كَذَا وَكَذَا . فَانْطَلَقُوا فَأَخَذُوا الرَّجُلَ الَّذِي ظَنَّتْ أَنَّهُ وَقَعَ عَلَيْهَا فَأَتَوْهَا بِهِ فَقَالَتْ نَعَمْ هُوَ هَذَا . فَأَتَوْا بِهِ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَلَمَّا أَمَرَ بِهِ قَامَ صَاحِبُهَا الَّذِي وَقَعَ عَلَيْهَا فَقَالَ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَنَا صَاحِبُهَا . فَقَالَ " اذْهَبِي فَقَدْ غَفَرَ اللَّهُ لَكِ " . وَقَالَ لِلرَّجُلِ قَوْلاً حَسَنًا . قَالَ أَبُو دَاوُدَ يَعْنِي الرَّجُلَ الْمَأْخُوذَ وَقَالَ لِلرَّجُلِ الَّذِي وَقَعَ عَلَيْهَا " ارْجُمُوهُ "
Narrated Wa'il ibn Hujr:
When a woman went out in the time of the Prophet (ﷺ) for prayer, a man attacked her and overpowered (raped) her.
She shouted and he went off, and when a man came by, she said: That (man) did such and such to me. And when a company of the Emigrants (Senior Companions) came by, she said: That man did such and such to me. They went and seized the man whom they thought had raped her and brought him to her. She said: Yes, this is he. Then they brought him to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ).
When he (the Prophet) was about to pass sentence, the man who (actually) had assaulted her stood up and said: Messenger of Allah, I am the man who raped her. He (the Prophet) said to her: Go away, for Allah has forgiven you. But he told the man some good words (Abu Dawud said: meaning the man who was seized), and of the man who raped her, he said: Stone him to death.
In this case, a woman was attacked and raped by a man, and when she reported the crime to the companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him), they brought the accused to the Prophet (peace be upon him), for judgment. However, during the course of the trial, the actual perpetrator of the crime confessed, and the Prophet (peace be upon him), ordered that he be stoned to death for his crime.
In the case of sexual assault or rape, the victim is not punished in Islam. Rather, the perpetrator of the crime is punished. This is in accordance with the teachings of Islam that emphasize the protection of the rights and dignity of all individuals, especially the vulnerable and marginalized. The hadith of Wail Ibn Hujr you mentioned is a clear example of this principle being applied. The woman who was attacked and raped was not punished, but rather the perpetrator was punished according to the law.
It's important to note that while this Hadith provides an example of how sexual assault was dealt with during the time of the Prophet, the specific circumstances of this case may not necessarily apply universally to all cases of sexual assault. Islamic jurisprudence is complex, and rulings on individual cases may depend on a variety of factors, including the specific circumstances of the crime, the evidence available, and the interpretation of Islamic law by qualified scholars.
The well-known case of Ma’iz ibn Malik al-Aslami (May Allah be pleased with him) could be a case of sexual assault because the victim was not punished.
حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ سُلَيْمَانَ الأَنْبَارِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا وَكِيعٌ، عَنْ هِشَامِ بْنِ سَعْدٍ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنِي يَزِيدُ بْنُ نُعَيْمِ بْنِ هَزَّالٍ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، قَالَ كَانَ مَاعِزُ بْنُ مَالِكٍ يَتِيمًا فِي حِجْرِ أَبِي . فَأَصَابَ جَارِيَةً مِنَ الْحَىِّ فَقَالَ لَهُ أَبِي ائْتِ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَأَخْبِرْهُ بِمَا صَنَعْتَ لَعَلَّهُ يَسْتَغْفِرُ لَكَ وَإِنَّمَا يُرِيدُ بِذَلِكَ رَجَاءَ أَنْ يَكُونَ لَهُ مَخْرَجًا فَأَتَاهُ فَقَالَ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ إِنِّي زَنَيْتُ فَأَقِمْ عَلَىَّ كِتَابَ اللَّهِ . فَأَعْرَضَ عَنْهُ فَعَادَ فَقَالَ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ إِنِّي زَنَيْتُ فَأَقِمْ عَلَىَّ كِتَابَ اللَّهِ . حَتَّى قَالَهَا أَرْبَعَ مِرَارٍ . قَالَ صلى الله عليه وسلم " إِنَّكَ قَدْ قُلْتَهَا أَرْبَعَ مَرَّاتٍ فَبِمَنْ " . قَالَ بِفُلاَنَةَ . قَالَ " هَلْ ضَاجَعْتَهَا " . قَالَ نَعَمْ . قَالَ " هَلْ بَاشَرْتَهَا " . قَالَ نَعَمْ . قَالَ " هَلْ جَامَعْتَهَا " . قَالَ نَعَمْ . قَالَ فَأَمَرَ بِهِ أَنْ يُرْجَمَ فَأُخْرِجَ بِهِ إِلَى الْحَرَّةِ . فَلَمَّا رُجِمَ فَوَجَدَ مَسَّ الْحِجَارَةِ جَزِعَ فَخَرَجَ يَشْتَدُّ فَلَقِيَهُ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ أُنَيْسٍ وَقَدْ عَجَزَ أَصْحَابُهُ فَنَزَعَ لَهُ بِوَظِيفِ بَعِيرٍ فَرَمَاهُ بِهِ فَقَتَلَهُ ثُمَّ أَتَى النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَذَكَرَ ذَلِكَ لَهُ فَقَالَ " هَلاَّ تَرَكْتُمُوهُ
Narrated Nu'aym ibn Huzzal:
Yazid ibn Nu'aym ibn Huzzal, on his father's authority, said: Ma'iz ibn Malik was an orphan under the protection of my father. He had illegal sexual intercourse with a slave girl belonging to a clan. My father said to him: Go to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and inform him of what you have done, for he may perhaps ask Allah for your forgiveness. His purpose in that was simply a hope that it might be a way of escape for him.
So he went to him and said: Messenger of Allah! I have committed fornication, so inflict on me the punishment ordained by Allah. He (the Prophet) turned away from him, so he came back and said: Messenger of Allah! I have committed fornication, so inflict on me the punishment ordained by Allah. He (again) turned away from him, so he came back and said: Messenger of Allah! I have committed fornication, so inflict on me the punishment ordained by Allah.
When he uttered it four times, the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: You have said it four times. With whom did you commit it?
He replied: With so and so. He asked: Did you lie down with her? He replied: Yes. He asked: Had your skin been in contact with hers? He replied. Yes. He asked: Did you have intercourse with her? He said: Yes. So he (the Prophet) gave orders that he should be stoned to death. He was then taken out to the Harrah, and while he was being stoned he felt the effect of the stones and could not bear it and fled. But Abdullah ibn Unays encountered him when those who had been stoning him could not catch up with him. He threw the bone of a camel's foreleg at him, which hit him and killed him. They then went to the Prophet (ﷺ) and reported it to him.
He said: Why did you not leave him alone.
This hadith relates to the punishment of stoning for sexual assault in Islam. It illustrates the importance of taking responsibility for one's actions and seeking forgiveness from Allah for wrongdoing. The man, Ma'iz ibn Malik, repeatedly confessed to committing the sin of sexual assault and asked for the punishment prescribed by Allah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) gave him multiple opportunities to retract his confession, but when he persisted, the punishment of stoning was carried out.
The penalty of stoning to death is derived from the aforementioned Ayah (5:33)
It is important to note that Islamic punishments, including those for crimes such as rape and adultery, have been debated and interpreted in different ways by scholars over time. But they are necessary to maintain the social order and deter individuals from committing crimes. Committing grave crimes like rape, murder or robbing is inhumane and should be checked by implementing law and order.