Early marriage causes death of child bride in Yemen

Park Sae-jin Reporter() | Posted : September 13, 2013, 15:54 | Updated : September 13, 2013, 15:54
A very strange and painful event happened in the tribal area of Hardh, northwestern Yemen, bordering Saudi Arabia.

This is the area where girls are married at very early age. So, by following this custom, an eight-year-old girl was married to a 40-year-old guy and unfortunately, this young girl couldn’t suffer the sexual trauma on the wedding night which caused her death on the same night.

She died of the internal injuries due to sexual trauma. She was very young to get married and the age of her husband is about five times more than her. Her body couldn’t bear the pain and injuries on the wedding night.

But, people in the area don’t understand the consequences of getting married at very early age. Human right organizations made an arrest call for her husband for such an inhuman act to an innocent girl.

The issue of forced child marriages is very serious in the Middle East region which has existed there since ages.

According to the United Nations Population Fund, more than 140 million girls will become child brides between 2011 and 2020.

Out of these 140 million girls who will marry before the age of 18, about 50 million will be under the age of 15.

In fact, based on certain reports it is proved that more than a quarter of young girls in Yemen get married before they turn 15. Due to these early age marriages, child brides suffer a lot in terms of health, education and moral development. Furthermore, they are also subjected to physical, emotional and sexual violence in their forced marriage.

According to the law which was created in February 2009, minimum age for marriage is 17 years. But, some of the lawmakers considered it as un-Islamic and consequently, it was repealed. The main hurdle in the child marriage issue is that there is no consistent legalized definition of a “child” on global level.

This is the reason that different countries around the globe interpretate it in different ways, which leaves least protection to the affected child.

By Ruchi Singh
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