A controversial Muslim community leader has said violence towards women should be a "last resort".

President of the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils Keysar Trad appeared on Sky News last night when host Andrew Bolt brought up domestic violence.

The presenter quoted from the Koran, saying "It is permissible for him (husbands) to beat her (the wife) light with his hands".

"Violence is a last resort," Trad responded.

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