A man divorcing the wife he married unwillingly

Q: I married my cousin unwillingly when my father insisted that I marry her. He told me to divorce her later if she is not a good wife. Now, I am in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and I have not returned to Egypt for three years. I want to travel and divorce my wife, since I neither fulfill my obligations towards her properly, because I do not like her, nor do I observe her marital rights. Will I wrong her by divorcing her? Does she have rights on me? Please advise, may Allah reward you.

A: If the reality is as you mentioned, you are encouraged to utilize the available means of reconciliation. Perhaps you live together in peace. If you cannot pursue that option and insist on divorce, let it be a release in a kind way, that is, divorce her one time. Afterwards, you are responsible to provide her with Nafaqah (obligatory financial support), clothing, and housing during her `Iddah (woman's prescribed waiting period after divorce). You are also required to provide these things for the period before divorce if (Part No. 20; Page No. 7) you have not supported her financially, unless she absolves you of that. You are permitted to take her back in marriage if you want as long as she is still in her `Iddah and you have not divorced her two times before. May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.