Malaysian women
Muslim women gather to listen to religious talk in Kota Bharu, in Malaysia's northeastern state of Kelantan, in this September 2009 pictureReuters / Zainal Abd Halim

A Malaysian Islamist group has blamed feminism and internet browsing habits for women neglecting their families. Muslim women can pursue careers; however, home and family still need to be their priority, according to Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (ISMA) president Abdulla Zaik Abdul Rahman.

"I believe that Asian women, especially Muslim women who still hold on to the principles, know that the main priority of the woman is at home," Malay Mail Online quoted him as saying when he spoke at the ISMA Women's Forum.

Speaking at a press conference after the event, he added that feminism in its current form suits only Western countries, but in a Muslim majority country like Malaysia it needs to be filtered by cultural and religion. He fears it would create a negative impact on Malaysian women.

"If this is to continue, then there will be an extraordinary void in our family institutions where children will not receive the love and attention they need from their mothers," Rahman continued.

According to him, maintaining a household and raising successful children are one of the most important roles of a woman. However, many of them were ignoring these for their career due to feminism, reported the Asian Correspondent.

Suggesting that women should rather be allowed to work for only half a day to make them focus on their family, Rahman feels feminism has also resulted in women taking over jobs that were traditionally meant only for men.

"Unlike before, when some fields are done by men and cannot be done by women, today women can enter all fields; in fact some women are considered more competent. Women can enter all fields and this constricts the space for men to function and there are no longer fields especially for men or especially for women."