x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Charges say man forced wife to abort

An Emirati man is charged with forcing his wife to take ulcer pills to abort her unborn child.

DUBAI // An Emirati man was charged yesterday with forcing his wife to take ulcer pills to abort her unborn child. The defendant, SA, who failed to appear at the first hearing at the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance, was also charged with threatening to kill his wife and endangering her life. SA, 21, married FK, 24, in March 2008, but divorced her five months later, according to prosecution records.

FK said that they reconciled, which under Sharia does not require another marriage ceremony, and last April, FK discovered that she was pregnant. "When I told him about my pregnancy, he insisted that I have an abortion," she told prosecutors. "I refused and he kept insisting." FK told prosecutors her husband was abusive and repeatedly beat her. On May 21, she said, SA asked her to accompany him to his father's farm in Hatta.

"I agreed due to his polite demeanour, although my sisters warned me," she said. The next day, she said, her husband handed her a strip of pills and asked her to take them to abort the foetus. When she refused, he beat her and threatened to kill her, she said. An escape attempt failed, which the woman said left her with no choice but to do as he demanded and take the pills. Thirty minutes later, she began experiencing stomach pains and had soon lost the foetus.

"The next day I was dropped off at home and I immediately informed my sister, who urged me to report the incident to police and head to Al Wasl hospital," FK told prosecutors. The prosecution sought a sentence of five years in prison. The maximum term is seven years. Judge Hamad Abdul Latif adjourned the hearing so the defendant could appear before the court on August 27. newsdesk@thenational.ae