Emirati woman loses custody of four children after marrying foreigner

Emirati woman loses custody of four children after marrying foreigner
An Emirati mother has lost custody of her four children after she married a foreigner, UAE media have reported.
2 min read
20 November, 2018
The UAE has stripped an Emirati woman of custody of her children [AFP]
An Emirati woman has been denied custody of her four children by a UAE court after she married a foreign man, local media reported.

Dubai-based Khaleej Times said that the unnamed mother married a foreigner after she was divorced her Emirati husband, who is the father of the four children.

The husband argued in court that the three girls and one boy should not be raised by the mother as she had married a foreigner from a "different culture and traditions", the newspaper reported.

The UAE's top court took ruled in favour of the father, and said that he could stop paying alimony and monthly expenses to his former wife.

Court papers stated that the mother was granted custody of the children after the divorce a few years ago, and the father was required to provide a house, financial support, and a housemaid to the mother and children.

Once the Emirati man discovered his former wife had married a foreigner, he went to court against seeking custody of the children. He argued that he was concerned about the "safety and proper upbringing of his children after their mother got married to a foreign man", according to the UAE daily.

He also demanded the mother's eviction from her home and an end to income support for her.

Following rulings from the Family Court of First Instance and the Appeal Court, the mother lost custody of her children.

She then took the battle to the Supreme Court, with the judge denying 
her appeal and ruling that the father would raise the children in accordance to Emirati culture and traditions.

Despite the UAE touting itself as a regional leader in promoting women's rights, NGOs and human rights groups paint a very different picture with Emirati law denying equal rights between the sexes.

Abu Dhabi has repeatedly warned Emiratis against marrying foreigners, with women nationals being strongly advised not to marry non-citizens.

Although the children of Emirati men and foreign women become UAE nationals, the same is not true for Emirati women who marry foreigners.