8-Year-Old Yemeni Childbride Dies Of Internal Injuries After Sex With 40 Year Old Husband
Rawan, an eight-year-old child bride has died of internal bleeding sustained during her wedding night after being forced to marry a man five times her age. This happened in the tribal area of Hardh in northwestern Yemen.
“Activists are now calling for the groom, who is believed to be around 40 years old, and her family to be arrested so they can face justice in the courts.”
“They say arrests would help put a stop to the practice of marrying very young girls to older men in the impoverished region.”
The practice of marrying young girls is common in Yemen and other parts of the world.
It has therefore become an issue of global concern which has attracted the attention of international rights groups seeking to pressure the government to outlaw child marriages.
Poverty in Yemen has made it difficult to curb the issue, as poor families find themselves unable to say no to 'bride-prices' that can be hundreds of dollars for their daughters.
According to a report in 2010 by the Social Affairs Ministry:
“More than a quarter of Yemen's females marry before age 15.”
Custom as well as the belief that a young bride can be made into an obedient wife, give birth to more children and be kept away from temptation are factors that make the issue of 'child brides' difficult to abolish. However, a local human rights organisation said:
“In September 2010, a 12-year-old Yemeni child-bride died after struggling for three days in labour to give birth.”
Yemen once set 15 as the minimum age for marriage, but parliament annulled that law in the 1990s, saying parents should decide when a daughter marries.
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