KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, March 11 (UPI) -- The daughter of a former Malaysian prime minister said there is "an insidious growing form of apartheid" between Muslim and non-Muslim women in the country.
"We should also note that only in Malaysia are Muslim women regressing; in every other Muslim country in the world, women have been gaining rights, not losing them," Marina Mahathir said.
The country has a new family law act that supporters say only standardizes Sharia law in all provinces. The BBC reports that many conservative Muslims have reacted with anger to any criticism of the law.
"Her prejudiced views and assumptions smack of ignorance of the objectives and methodology of the Sharia, and a slavish capitulation to western feminism's notions of women's rights, gender equality and sexuality," the Muslim Professionals Forum said.
Critics also said that Mahathir's father, Mahathir Mohamad, introduced apartheid to Malaysia with legislation that denied some ethnic groups full access to education.