Imam detained for preaching gender violence

Religious reader explained how best to beat women

The imam leaves the police station after refusing to give a statement.
The imam leaves the police station after refusing to give a statement.MARCEL.LI SAENZ (EL PAÍS)

An imam in the Catalan city of Terrassa has allegedly been encouraging his followers to beat unruly women and inflict violence on females who do not follow their husband’s orders or strict Islamic law, the local police said in a statement on Tuesday.

In his sermons, the imam, Abdeslam Laaroussi, a Moroccan, would offer examples on “how to beat” women and isolate them, and discourage men from having sexual relations with them. According to police, Laaroussi told his followers that it was best to punch women or use a stick on different parts of their bodies without breaking their bones or making them bleed.

The Catalan police force, subpoenaed the man to give a statement, after complaints were filed that he was trying to foment gender violence.

While he refused to give a statement, he was charged after investigators found his speeches and sermons contained elements that promote discrimination.

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