Written By: Shuaib al-Mosawa & Elena White
Article Date: Jun 25, 2012 - 7:59:21 PM
Despite the fact that Islam strictly oppose underage marriages, with clerics having on many occasions stated that such practices were contrary to the Scriptures, most tribal communities in Yemen continue to marry off their young daughters to older men.
Two 8 years old child brides appears with their husbands in Haja in north Yemen
Recent studies conducted in Yemen revealed that 52% of girls are married off before the age of 18 and 14% before the age of 15, with in some extreme cases young girls as little as 8 being allowed to enter a marital union.
Child marriage is once again being brought to the forefront of the news following a series of suicide.
Three “child brides” reportedly resorted to poison to escape their who had to resort to poison to escape their abusers – their husbands – preferring death to a lifetime of suffering and violence. In all cases the young girls’ husbands were aged 50 to 60-years old, some four decades .... older than their brides, raising the very real question of “authorized pedophilia.”
Doctor Abdurrahman Suwaileh, Head of the al-Ashah hospital in al-Ashah district – Amran province – told the press that since the beginning of 2012, three teenage girls – about 12-years old – voluntarily ingested poison, committing suicide in a desperate cry for help.
Suwaileh explained that child marriage was sadly not an unusual occurrence in the province of Amran, but rather the norm.
“The phenomenon is horribly widespread. Once a [child] bride reaches 12, she immediately gets married,” Suwaileh said.
The Doctor went on saying that he had himself witnessed the purchase of an underage bride last week, noting that large amount of money had been exchange prior to the signature of the marriage contract in between the groom and the father-in-law.
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