Following are excerpts from a religious program featuring Egyptian cleric Yousuf Al-Badri, which aired on BBC Arabic TV, which aired on October 16, 2010:
Yousuf Al-Badri: In Islam, the marriage contract is a contract of pleasure, which allows both husband and wife to derive pleasure from one another. So if deriving pleasure lies at the core of the contract, how can we possibly call it rape when a husband derives pleasure from his wife?!
Interviewer: What if it is against her will, using violence?
Yousuf Al-Badri: According to the hadith, if a husband summons his wife and she refuses – she incurs the wrath of God in Heaven when she's asleep. The husband is not allowed to rape her, but she incurs the wrath of Allah. The Prophet Muhammad said that she must come to him even if she is baking by the stove or riding a horse.
Interviewer: A marriage of contract is not a deed of ownership, in which the woman relinquishes her honor, her mind, and so on.
Yousuf Al-Badri: This talk about honor is a new thing. We never heard of it until these days. If a woman is at home with her husband, and she is his companion and runs the household, and he asks her to give him food, drink, and so on – how can we possibly consider it rape when he derives pleasure from her, even if she doesn't feel like it, of if she abhors it... How can we possibly consider it a kind of what is called "rape"? This is not true.
Interviewer: She's his wife! Do you justify beatings or sadistic behavior?
Yousuf Al-Badri: Islam forbids beating unless it is done with a stick – a stick the size of a pencil or a toothpick.