Published On: Wed, May 1st, 2013

Most Muslims Want Sharia as Law of The Land – Pew Forum Survey


By Mourad Anouar

Morocco Tribune

Oklahoma, U.S.A | According to a new survey, most Muslim world people want Sharia as the official law in their countries, but they disagree on what it includes and who should be subject to it.

A new Pew Research Center survey of Muslims around the globe finds that most adherents of the world’s second-largest religion are deeply committed to their faith and want its teachings to shape not only their personal lives but also their societies and politics,” Pew said.

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life said that over three-quarters of Muslims in the Middle East and North Africa, South Asia and Southeast Asia want sharia courts to decide family law issues such as divorce and property disputes.

The percentage of Muslims who expressed their favor to have the sharia to be “the official law of the land” varies widely around the world, from fewer than one-in-ten in Azerbaijan (8%) to near unanimity in Afghanistan (99%). But solid majorities in most of the countries surveyed across the Middle East and North Africa, sub -Saharan Africa, South Asia and Southeast Asia favor the establishment of sharia, including 71% of Muslims in Nigeria, 72% in Indonesia, 74% in Egypt and 89% in the Palestinian territories,”

As for religious tolerance, the survey finds that most Muslims favor religious freedom for people of other faiths. “In Pakistan, for example, three-quarters of Muslims say that non-Muslims are very free to practice their religion, and fully 96% of those who share this assessment say it is “a good thing.” Yet 84% of Pakistani Muslims favor enshrining sharia as official law. These seemingly divergent views are possible partly because most supporters of sharia in Pakistan – as in many other countries – think Islamic law should apply only to Muslims. Moreover, Muslims around the globe have differing understandings of what sharia means in practice,”

As for the issues of women, “majorities of Muslim women as well as men agree that a wife is always obliged to obey her husband. Indeed, more than nine-in-ten Muslims in Iraq (92%), Morocco (92%), Tunisia (93%), Indonesia (93%), Afghanistan (94%) and Malaysia (96%) express this view,”

Concerning the freedom to wear the Hijab, majorities in many countries surveyed say a woman should be able to decide for herself whether to wear it or not.