Two Pakistani women became the first Muslim lesbian couple to get married in a civil ceremony in the UK, Al Arabiya news agency reported Monday.
Rehana Kausar, 34, and Sobia Kamar, 29, were students in the UK and have now applied for political asylum after their marriage earlier this month in Leeds.
“This country allows us rights and it’s a very personal decision that we have taken. It’s no one’s business as to what we do with our personal lives,” Kausar told the Birmingham-based Sunday Mercury newspaper.
According to the registrar, the two met three years ago when they were studying business and health care management at Birmingham. They also lived together in South Yorkshire for about a year. Their relatives said that the couple has received threats both in the UK and in Pakistan, an Islamic state where same-sex marriage is illegal.
The couple could not perform a religious ceremony as they could not find an Imam to perform the ritual for them.
According to Al Arabiya, recent years have seen some Muslim gay and lesbian couples have chosen to perform nikah, but it is problematic since the contract is not recognised in the UK unless accompanied by civil ceremony.