Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on June 15 had a video conference with imams of mosques and religious figures of the country, according to CA-News.

Among other issues, the problem of polygamy in Uzbekistan was reportedly discussed during that video conference.  

The president, in particular, called on imams not to perform a nikah for second wives.  He also noted that a law providing for punishment for imams performing a nikah without marriage certificate will be worked out soon.  

Recall, Tajik laws do not recognize religious marriages.  As a measure aimed at curbing polygamy, Tajikistan has banned mullahs from performing Islamic marriages, or “nikah,” unless the couple presents their official marriage certificate.

Polygamy is a criminal offense in Tajikistan which carries a maximum penalty of five years' imprisonment.

In Islam, marriage is a legal contract between two people.  Both the groom and the bride are to consent to the marriage of their own free wills.  A formal, binding contract is considered integral to a religiously valid Islamic marriage, and outlines the rights and responsibilities of the groom and bride.  There must be two Muslim witnesses of the marriage contract.

Nikah (the term for Islamic marriage) literally means “sexual intercourse.”  Islam is totally opposed to monasticism and celibacy.  Marriage is an act of Sunnah in Islam and is strongly recommended.