Yemen child forced into marriage dies
April 9, 2010
SANAA: A 13-year-old Yemeni girl who had been forced into marriage died five
days after her wedding when she suffered a rupture in her sex organs and
haemorrhaging, a local human right's organisation said.
Ilham Mahdi al-Assi died last Friday in al-Thawra hospital in Hajja province,
the Shaqaeq Arab Forum for Human Rights said in a statement quoting a medical
She was married last week in a traditional arrangement known as ''swap
marriage'' in which the brother of the bride also married the sister of the
groom, it said.
''The child Ilham has died as a martyr due to the abuse of children's lives in
Yemen,'' the non-government organisation said.
Her death is a ''flagrant example'' of the results of opposing the ban on child
marriage in Yemen, which is leading to ''killing child females'', it said.
The marriage of young girls is widespread in Yemen, which has a strong tribal
The death of a 12-year-old girl in childbirth in September illustrated the case
of the country's ''brides of death'', many of whom are married even before
Controversy has heightened in Yemen recently over a law banning child marriage
by setting a minimum age of 17 for women and 18 for men.
Thousands of women demonstrated outside parliament last month, answering a call
by Islamist parties opposing the law.
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