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Criminal Law

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The Oxford Dictionary of Islam What is This? Covers the religious, political, and social spheres of global Islam in the modern world

    Criminal Law

    Islamic criminal law recognizes three categories of wrongs punishable by the state: hudud crimes (sing. hadd; contravention of limits set by God), which lead to a prescribed and mandatory punishment; tazir (chastisement) crimes, involving discretionary punishment inflicted by the ruler; and qisas (retribution) crimes, concerned with injuries against the person such as homicide, infliction of wounds, and battery. In cases of qisas, the victim or the victim's next of kin may waive retribution in exchange for financial compensation (diyyah). However, in some cases the state retains the jurisdiction to punish the offender, despite the victim's or kin's acceptance of diyyah. Except for Saudi Arabia and a few other countries that continue to use traditional Islamic law in penal matters, most Muslim countries have adopted French-based criminal codes: Algeria, 1966 ; Kuwait, 1960 ; Libya, 1953 ; Morocco, 1962 ; and Pakistan, 1979 .

    See also Hadd; Qisas; Tazir

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