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What happens to women who spend their life under the rule of terrorists and extremists? It’s time we hear their story


Article by Sroweta Kar, The North-Eastern Chronicle

Visual by: Aslam Siddique

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The superiority of men is an age-long thing which we have listened from our grandparents and may see in the present time too. The horrifying history of sexual violence and abuse is attracted to organizations of Islamic states(or ISIS) for its systematic use of rape and slavery as a form of terrorism.

Also read: US Air Force to continue providing air support to Afghan security forces; US General says upcoming days are going to be tough but Taliban’s victory is not inevitable

What is ISIS?


ISIS’s popular acronym Islamic state is a great threat to the whole world. It was established in 2014 in Iraq as a division of Al Qaeda and later changed to ISIS.

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was the founder of Al Qaeda who ruled the Iraqi branch for many years. His methods were more brutal than those of Al Qaeda, and which resulted in conflict with its central leadership.

He was killed in 2006, by an American airstrike, leaving behind Jihadi fighters who were experts in military battlegrounds.

We all have seen the famous beheading videos which are circulated all over the internet, those videos are the products of ISIS taking place in the desert of Iraq or Syria with a knife in the throat.

The beading of famous American journalist James Foley got them the limelight which they wanted and the world got to know about them for the first time.

Another terror group: The Taliban


Comparing ISIS’s brutality against women, the same brutality and malnutrition, oppression was seen during the rule of the Taliban. The orthodox mentality of the Taliban regime against women made it hard for them to breathe.

Always wearing a burqa, staying at home, if going out the women must be accompanied by a family member, such rules automatically segregated women from society.

ISIS ‘Manifesto for women’


In 2015, for the first time, a manifesto or guide was released naming, Women of the Islamic State: Manifesto and Case study for the women.

It was published in Arabic online in many Jihadi forums and later was translated to English by a British think tank Quillam Foundation, a counter-terrorism organization, providing an insight into the lives of women within ISIS.

Role of women according to the ‘Manifesto’

The manifesto was translated and comprised 41 pages. According to the manifesto, women should be always hidden, the women need to wear a burqa always.

Women’s main role is to produce children and devote her life to her children and husband. Women do not need to work said in the manifesto. Fashion shops are banned by ISIS who thinks that it shows that men and women are not equal and says to be a work of the devil.

Women cannot leave their homes only on exceptional circumstances such as wage Jihad when no men are available or study religion.

If a woman is forced to work outside, it should be only for three days a week as they think it will depart the woman from her husband and children. ISIS states that the western model for women has failed.

It also questioned and accused the ruling Royal family of Saudi Arabia of deviating from the path of Islam.

Education and Marriage

During the Taliban regime, women’s universities were closed, women dropped out of schools, colleges, jobs. The single source for uplifting them was gone.

The manifesto says, “From ages seven to nine, there will be three lessons: fiqh (understanding) and religion, Qur’anic Arabic (writing and reading) and science (accounting and natural sciences)”.

“From ages 10 to 12, there will be more religious studies, especially fiqh, focusing more on fiqh related to women and the rulings on marriage and divorce. This is in addition to the other two subjects. Skills like textiles and knitting, basic cooking will also be part of girls’ education”.

“From 13 to 15, there will be more focus on sharia and as manual skills (especially those related to raising children) and less of the science, the basics of which will already have been taught. In addition, they will be taught Islamic history, the life of the prophet, and his followers.”

In terms of marriage, girls can be married from the age of nine and girls should be married by the age of 16-17 years of old as they are young and healthy.

Jihadi brides – ‘Jihadi Feminism’

More than 3400 women from the West left their homes to join ISIS. Why western women are interested to join is a question of debate.

The portrayal of ISIS’s adventurous life which will give meaning to their living attracts men and women. ISIS shows a glorious image of living in the deserts of Iraq and Syria. But if we read the manifesto this all will be a lie and false hope which they give to join them.

Aqsa Mahmood, a British girl is seen to have a leading role in women in ISIS. She was one of the girls who were engaged in online forums. She would attract more girls to join ISIS. This is a form of human trafficking they do to lure women in.

To know it better we need to know about the concept of Fatwa. Fatwa is a legal Islamic opinion given by Mufti or cleric when Islamic law is not clear enough and can be interpreted in different ways.

This has been used against women to exploit them. “Nikkah ul Jihad” stems from the Tunisian Governments effort in the war against Al Qaeda in Algeria.

It is known to be a controversial Fatwa where women need to give themselves to Jihadi fighters. This was done not to distract the fighters from war and to relieve their sexual frustration.

This Fatwa permitted them to marry the women for a week or some hours to have ‘Halal’ sex with them to relieve their frustration and to focus on the battlefields. This showed many women returned home pregnant and with sexual diseases having sex with 10-20 men in the war.

Sexual guide

“Question 1: What is al-sabi?

Al-Sabi is a woman from among ahl al-harb [the people of war] who has been captured by Muslims.

Question 2: What makes al-sabi permissible?

What makes al-sabi permissible [i.e., what makes it permissible to take such a woman captive] is [her] unbelief. Unbelieving [women] who were captured and brought into the abode of Islam are permissible to us after the Imam distributes them [among us].

Question 4: Is it permissible to have intercourse with a female captive?

It is permissible to have sexual intercourse with the female captive. Allah the almighty said: “[Successful are the believers] who guard their chastity, except their wives or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess, for then they are free from blame [Koran 23:5-6]”.

Question 5: Is it permissible to have intercourse with a female captive immediately after taking
possession [of her]?

If she is a virgin, he [her master] can have intercourse with her immediately after taking possession of her. However, if she isn’t, her uterus must be purified [first].

Question 6: Is it permissible to sell a female captive?

It is permissible to buy, sell, or give as a gift female captives and slaves, for they are merely property, which can be disposed of as long as that does not cause [the Muslim Ummah] any harm or damage.

Question 9: If the female captive was impregnated by her owner, can he then sell her?

He cannot sell her if she becomes the mother of a child.

Question 13: Is it permissible to have intercourse with a female slave who has not reached puberty?

It is permissible to have intercourse with the female slave who has not reached puberty if she is fit
for intercourse; however, if she is not fit for intercourse, then it is enough to enjoy her without intercourse.

Question 19: Is it permissible to beat a female slave?

It is permissible to beat the female slave as a [form of] darb ta’deeb [disciplinary beating], [but] it is forbidden to [use] darb al-takseer [literally, breaking beating], [darb] al-tashaffi [beating for the purpose of achieving gratification], or [darb] al-ta’dheeb [torture beating]. Further, it is forbidden to
hit the face.

Question 21: What is the earthly punishment of a female slave who runs away from her master?

She [i.e. the female slave who runs away from her master] has no punishment according to the Shari’a of Allah; however, she is [to be] reprimanded [in such a way that] deters others like her from

After writing about it, ISIS shows that they follow the path of Islam and teaching but their acts are opposed to or they use Fatwa in every respect naming it to be in the Quaran.

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