8-Year-Old Saudi Girl Divorces 50-Year-Old Husband

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Lightning88
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30 Apr 2009, 9:25 pm

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090501/ap_ ... d_marriage




CAIRO – An 8-year-old Saudi girl has divorced her middle-aged husband after her father forced her to marry him last year in exchange for about $13,000, her lawyer said Thursday. Saudi Arabia has come under increasing criticism at home and abroad for permitting child marriages. The United States, a close ally of the conservative Muslim kingdom, has called child marriage a "clear and unacceptable" violation of human rights.

The girl was allowed to divorce the 50-year-old man who she married in August after an out-of-court settlement had been reached in the case, said her lawyer, Abdulla al-Jeteli. The exact date of the divorce was not immediately known.

A court in the central Oneiza region previously rejected a request by the girl's mother for a divorce and ruled that the girl would have to wait until she reached puberty to file a petition then.

There are no laws in Saudi Arabia defining the minimum age for marriage. Though a woman's consent is legally required, some marriage officials don't seek it.

But there has been a push by Saudi human rights groups to define the age of marriage and put an end to the phenomenon.

One Saudi human rights activist Sohaila Zain al-Abdeen was optimistic that the girl's divorce would help efforts to get a law passed enforcing a minimum marriage age of 18.

"Unfortunately, some fathers trade their daughters," she told The Associated Press. "They are weak people who are sometimes in need of money and forget their roles as parents."

It was not clear if the man received money for the divorce settlement. The man had given the girl's father 50,000 riyals, or about $13,350, as a marriage gift in return for his daughter, the lawyer said.

The 8-year-old girl's marriage was not the only one in the kingdom to receive attention in recent months. Saudi newspapers have highlighted several cases in which young girls were married off to much older men or young boys including a 15-year-old girl whose father, a death-row inmate, married her off to a cell mate.

Saudi Arabia's conservative Muslim clergy have opposed the drive to end child marriages. In January, the kingdom's most senior cleric said it was permissible for 10-year-old girls to marry and those who believe they are too young are doing the girls an injustice.

But some in the government appear to support the movement to set a minimum age for marriage. The kingdom's new justice minister was quoted in mid-April as saying the government was doing a study on underage marriage that would include regulations.

There are no statistics to show how many marriages involving children are performed in Saudi Arabia every year. Activists say the girls are given away in return for hefty marriage gifts or as a result of long-standing custom in which a father promises his infant daughters and sons to cousins out of a belief that marriage will protect them from illicit relationships.



richardbenson
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30 Apr 2009, 9:30 pm

well in there culture its like that. shure it might make you crill and whatnot, and no i dont think a 8 year old girl should marry. or a 10 year old, thats just rediculous. but in most states here the legal age is way to high i think. 18? jesus. it should be 16 with consent



LosFrida
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30 Apr 2009, 9:49 pm

Lightning88 wrote:
Saudi Arabia's conservative Muslim clergy have opposed the drive to end child marriages. In January, the kingdom's most senior cleric said it was permissible for 10-year-old girls to marry and those who believe they are too young are doing the girls an injustice.


I just vomited in my mouth a little. Glad (stunned actually) that the girl was even able to get a divorce. My inner cynic, however, wonders if there's an aspect of this story not being reported. The quick divorce and no retribution seems a little fairy tale-esque for that country.


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30 Apr 2009, 10:58 pm

I agree. I'm skeptical. This just goes to show that females are property there, not people.


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30 Apr 2009, 11:18 pm

its stuff like this that make me laugh, we are the supposed "Infidels", yet we treat our people better. They are the supposed blessed children of Allah, we live in the most modern cities, the majority over there live in poverty and in the sand. We are supposed to be the over sexed nation, yet they are marrying off underage girls to 50 year old perverts!

(The "they" in my sentence is the hard right Muslim sects in the middle east, not the entire muslim community.)


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phil777
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30 Apr 2009, 11:31 pm

For your general education, the aspect of the religion in Saudi arabia is called Wahabism and it promotes a very humble and strict way of applying islamic laws. <.<

Should also be noted that most humans don't reach basic reproduction potential until puberty, where their hormones start acting up. =/ And say what you will, but even in western countries, there's always bound to be some people who like little girls (for the cute and innocent aspect? i dunno =.= ). After all, "petites" women wouldn't get much attention otherwise right? =/



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30 Apr 2009, 11:39 pm

I'm glad people stepped in and helped her.

I've seen many documentaries with little girls around that age pleaing for a divorce and it's not just the age of the man but the abuse that goes on behind closed doors.

Never did understand this mentality and attitude to use little children in such hurtful ways. I remember seeing a video of one little girl who had bruises all over her and she was dead by the time family members tried to help the situation. Murdered by her own husband and he got off free. Yet if a woman is even suspected of adultery, she is put to death.

I know this doesn't happen in all muslim cultures but it seems to be a big problem surrounding Islam.


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cognito
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30 Apr 2009, 11:41 pm

phil777 wrote:
For your general education, the aspect of the religion in Saudi arabia is called Wahabism and it promotes a very humble and strict way of applying islamic laws. <.<

Should also be noted that most humans don't reach basic reproduction potential until puberty, where their hormones start acting up. =/ And say what you will, but even in western countries, there's always bound to be some people who like little girls (for the cute and innocent aspect? i dunno =.= ). After all, "petites" women wouldn't get much attention otherwise right? =/

my comment was aimed at this
"Saudi Arabia's conservative Muslim clergy have opposed the drive to end child marriages. In January, the kingdom's most senior cleric said it was permissible for 10-year-old girls to marry and those who believe they are too young are doing the girls an injustice. "


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01 May 2009, 12:15 am

I think that the idea of allowing a 8 year old to marry a man is deeply wrong, it should be banned for child protection reasons. I say that the law should be that no person under the age of 18 is allowed to marry.


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phil777
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01 May 2009, 12:17 am

yup, and it's the royal family of Saudi Arabia which promotes this "conservative" islam, so the cleric having any link to them does not suprise me so much. =.=



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02 May 2009, 4:32 am

smart move by her.



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03 May 2009, 10:06 am

cognito wrote:
its stuff like this that make me laugh, we are the supposed "Infidels", yet we treat our people better. They are the supposed blessed children of Allah, we live in the most modern cities, the majority over there live in poverty and in the sand. We are supposed to be the over sexed nation, yet they are marrying off underage girls to 50 year old perverts!

(The "they" in my sentence is the hard right Muslim sects in the middle east, not the entire muslim community.)


Saudi Arabia has a high Human Development Index. As far as I can recall, the only country in the Arabian peninsula that does not have a high HDI is Yemen. Saudi Arabia only happens to follow a rather conservative form of sharia, which has become more liberal with time.



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03 May 2009, 7:50 pm

Khan_Sama wrote:
Saudi Arabia has a high Human Development Index. As far as I can recall, the only country in the Arabian peninsula that does not have a high HDI is Yemen. Saudi Arabia only happens to follow a rather conservative form of sharia, which has become more liberal with time.


From what I understand, though the Sharia Enforcement police in Saudi Arabia is mainly comprised of 'Reformed' criminal elements who rediscovered Islam, or rather, Salafism while incarcerated instead of actual ethics, so essentially they still remain violent thugs who operate under the graces and with the approval and backing of the Saudi Establishment.


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03 May 2009, 8:02 pm

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHYs4UKKIlM[/youtube]


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04 May 2009, 5:00 am

"A court in the central Oneiza region previously rejected a request by the girl's mother for a divorce and ruled that the girl would have to wait until she reached puberty to file a petition then. " 8O

This logic is just messed up. If she was not old enough for a divorce she certainly was not old enough for marriage.
I am glad this got sorted out though.