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Sunday 4th June 2023 / 15 Zulkaedah 1444

UK appoints first hijab-wearing judge

LONDON: A 40-year old woman has become the first-ever hijab-wearing judge in the United Kingdom.
Raffia Arshad, a 40-year old woman was appointed as a deputy district judge on the Midlands circuit last week after a 17-year career in law. “It is definitely bigger than me, I know this is not about me. It’s important for all women, not just Muslim women, but it is particularly important for Muslim women,” she said.
Arshad, a mother of three, has been practicing private law dealing with children, forced marriage, female genital mutilation, and other cases involving Islamic law for the past 17 years. She also shared her son’s picture on Twitter and expressed, “My eldest was delighted to see my book at the Middle Temple Library.”
She was the first in her family to go to university and has also written a leading text on Islamic family law. “It’s odd because it’s something I’ve been working towards for a number of years and I always imagined I had been absolutely ecstatic when I found out.
“I was happy, but the happiness I have had from other people sharing this is far greater.
“I have had so many emails from people, men, and women. It’s the ones from women that stand out, saying that they wear a hijab and they thought they wouldn’t even be able to become a barrister, let alone a judge.” She added, “I have been appointed on merit, not because I wear a hijab.”
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