Archive for May, 2013

16-year-old ‘forced to marry’ despite protection order

After her wedding reception, which was attended by between 550 and 1000 guests, the teenager went to a police station “in her pyjamas and in a distressed state”, a court heard.Her mother and aunt were subsequently arrested for allegedly breaching a forced marriage protection order which had been issued in November.They appeared at Luton County Court on Tuesday. The court heard that the girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, first went to Bedfordshire Police for help in 2012.

16-year-old 'forced to marry

(Posed by model) The girl’s mother and aunt were subsequently arrested for allegedly breaching a forced marriage protection order

James Weston, counsel for the force, said she told officers that her family had threatened to send her abroad to marry. She also claimed she was told that if she refused she would be “taken to Pakistan and shot, and everybody back home would be told it was suicide”. As a result, she was made the subject of a forced marriage protection order. The order, backed by the power of arrest, banned the child’s marriage without permission of the court. It also prevented her from travelling abroad and banned her mother from arranging a marriage, or enlisting the help of someone else to arrange it.

 

Read More: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/10085245/16-year-old-forced-to-marry-despite-protection-order.html

More Afghan women jailed for ‘moral crimes’, says HRW

The number of women and girls in Afghanistan imprisoned for “moral crimes” has risen by 50% in the past 18 months, a rights group says.

Human Rights Watch says many are jailed for running away from home, often from forced marriages or domestic violence. Others are behind bars as a result of alleged adultery, in truth often involving rape, it said. The government should “get tough on abusers of women and stop blaming women who are crime victims”, said HRW.

A woman at Badam Bagh, Afghanistan's central women's prison, in Kabul, Afghanistan - where manyinmates have been convicted of so-called "moral crimes"

It said 600 women and girls were now imprisoned for “moral crimes” – the highest since the US-led overthrow of the Taliban 12 years ago.

About 110 of those were girls under 18.

Virginity tests

Human Rights Watch’s alert comes just three days after angry scenes in the Afghan parliament forced a halt to a debate about reinforcing a law to prevent violence against women. The law banning violence against women, child marriages and forced marriages was passed by presidential decree in 2009, but did not gain MPs’ approval.

 

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-22614536

Tanzania: Zanzibar Community Chided for Condoning Underage Marriages

AT least 28 underage girls in West District in Unguja have been forced into marriage during the past two years, drawing criticism from women groups and activists in the Isles.

Some parents claimed that forcing girls into early marriage aimed at reducing pregnancy outside wedlock, but women groups and community leaders argue that allowing girls under 17 to get married “is morally and socially unacceptable.” Recent research findings in Bumbwisudi, Dole, Kianga, Mwanakwerekwe, Pangawe and Melinne areas showed that most victims in underage marriages were students who were consequently forced out of school.

Statistically, underage marriages seem to be dropping due to increasing awareness and the chance for pregnant students now to go back to schools after giving birth.

 

Read more: http://allafrica.com/stories/201305220499.html

Police picks up everybody involved in forced marriage saga of 13-year-old girl

Officials of the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Police have ended the drama over the Ablekuma forced marriage.

The Police stormed the house and picked up everybody – the man in the centre of the controversial marriage, her 13-year-old wife and the runaway elder sister, their mother and father.   The 13-year-old school girl was forced to marry a 25-year-old man originally scheduled to marry her 18-year-old elder sister.

The older girl had refused to marry the man and run away on the day of the marriage.  In her place however, her 13-year-old sister was forced to marry the man at a matrimonial ceremony held at Ablekuma in Accra.

But in a dramatic turn of events…. click here to read more: http://edition.myjoyonline.com/pages/news/201305/106475.php

Vic teens forced into marriage: inquiry

Melbourne girls as young as 15 are being forced into marriages overseas, a parliamentary inquiry has heard.

There were three examples of forced marriage in one Melbourne high school, a migrant support worker told the inquiry.

Girls are being married off for money and for their husbands to obtain visas, Hiba Casablanca from the Shakti Migrant and Refugee Women’s Support Group said.

She told the federal inquiry into slavery and human trafficking about a 15-year-old Melbourne girl who thought she was going on holidays to Asia with her family, but was married off.

‘She had been taken on holiday by her family and was unaware of what would be happening to her,’ Ms Casablanca told the inquiry.

The girl’s husband is now trying to obtain a spousal visa to come to Australia.

Australian authorities have been told the girl, who was born overseas, is now 18 years old.

 

Read more: http://www.skynews.com.au/national/article.aspx?id=870952

Lovers end life after girl forced to marry another youth in Surat

SURAT: Two lovers from Naldhari village of Valiya taluka in Bharuch died on Friday during treatment after consuming pesticide. The deceased lovers were hurt after forced marriage of the girl with another youth and committed suicide.

Sangita Vasava, 23, had developed relationship with neighbour Paresh Vasava, 25, few years back. Both residents of Naldhari village have promised each other to get married after permission from family members. However, Sangita’s family wanted her to get married to another youth in a neighbouring village. Sangita was forced to marry to another youth in April and after staying for few days with her husband she came to hear parents home as part of ritual.

Read more: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Lovers-end-life-after-girl-forced-to-marry-another-youth-in-Surat/articleshow/20017895.cms

Gambia: Ending Forced Marriages

It must be made clear and known to all that forced or arranged marriage is wrong, and cannot be justified on any religious or cultural basis.

However, the practice still exists in The Gambia, particularly in the rural areas.

We see in some parts of rural Gambia young girls being forced to marry against their will. Worst of all, they are sometimes being forced to marry men as old as their fathers’ age.

This practice must stop completely since it has many consequences for the girls, who are mainly the victims of arranged or forced marriages.

People forced into marriage may be promised greater opportunities, physically threatened and or emotionally blackmailed to do so.

When someone is forced into marriage with someone he or she does not really love the person feels that they no longer have control over their own lives.

 

Read more: http://allafrica.com/stories/201305090869.html

Australian Inquiry Told Of Forced Marriages Among Migrant Families

MELBOURNE, May 9 (Bernama) — Girls as young as 15 are being forced into marriages overseas, a parliamentary inquiry has heard.

A migrant support worker told the inquiry of three examples of forced marriage in one Melbourne high school, the Australian Associated Press reports.

Girls are being married off for money and for their husbands to obtain visas, Hiba Casablanca from the Shakti Migrant and Refugee Women’s Support Group said.

She told the federal inquiry into slavery and human trafficking about a 15-year-old Melbourne girl, who thought she was going on holidays to Asia with her family, but was married off.

“She had been taken on holiday by her family and was unaware of what would be happening to her,” Casablanca said.

The girl’s husband is now trying to obtain a spousal visa to come to Australia. Australian authorities have been told the girl, who was born overseas, is now 18 years old. In another example, a 21-year-old woman was married in exchange for money, Casablanca said.

 

Read more:  http://www.bernama.com.my/bernama/v7/wn/newsworld.php?id=948550

Afghan father guns down daughter over ‘affair’

In front of 300 villagers, Halima’s father shot her in the head, stomach and waist – a public execution overseen by local religious leaders in Afghanistan to punish her for an alleged affair. Halima, aged between 18 and 20 and a mother of two children, was killed for bringing ‘dishonour’ on her family. Police in the northwestern province of Badghis said Halima was accused of running away with a male cousin while her husband was in Iran, and her father sought advice from Taliban-backed clerics on how to punish her. “People in the mosque and village started taunting him about her escape with the cousin,” Badghis provincial police chief Sharafuddin Sharaf told AFP. “A local cleric who runs a madrassa told him that she must be punished with death, and the mullahs said she should be executed in public.

The father killed his daughter with three shots as instructed by religious elders and in front of villagers. We went there two days later but he and his entire family had fled.” Amnesty International said the killing, which occurred on April 22 in the village of Kookchaheel in Badghis province, was damning evidence of how little control Afghan police have over many areas of the country.

“Violence against women continues to be endemic in Afghanistan and those responsible very rarely face justice,” Amnesty’s Afghanistan researcher Horia Mosadiq said.
“Not only do women face violence at the hands of family members for reasons of preserving so-called ‘honour’, but frequently women face human rights abuses resulting from verdicts issued by traditional, informal justice systems.”

Police in Baghdis, a remote and impoverished province that borders Turkmenistan, said Halima had run away with her cousin to a village 30 kilometres away. Her father found her after 10 days and brought her back home, where clerics told him he must kill her in front of the villagers to assuage his family’s humiliation. A Badghis-based women’s rights activist said he had seen video footage of Hamila’s execution, which AFP was not able to obtain.

Read More: http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/international/04-May-2013/afghan-father-guns-down-daughter-over-affair

College tackles ‘honour killings’, Police see need for education

EMC news – Aruna Papp never questioned the beatings she received from her husband and her father until she moved to Canada.

Papp, who grew up in India and was married by the age of 17, began working as a short-order cook at York University after emigrating in the ’70s.
After finding a second job as a women’s locker room attendant, she secretlybegan taking sociology courses in the building next to where she worked. After coming home one night and learning from her daughter that her father had instructed her husband to beat her “because that’s the only language she understands,” she escaped and lived in her car for two weeks before finding a bachelor apartment. Since then she has founded the South Asian Family Services and works with the York Regional police to educate them on cultural differences and honour based violence.

The author of Unworthy Creature: A Punjabi Daughter’s Memoir of Honour, Shame and Love, Papp told the group at an Algonquin College workshop on April 23 that telling her story was tough, but it became necessary to help women gain equal rights.
 Aruna Papp, speaks at the Algonquin College workshop entitled In the Name of Honour: Responding to victims of Honour-Based Violence and Forced Marriage on April 23. Papp came to Canada in the'70s, was in an abusive relationship for 18 years. Since making the decision to leave her husband she founded the South Asian Family Support Services and consults with the York Regional Police on cultural issues.
The workshop, In the Name of Honour: Responding to victims of Honour-Based Violence and Forced Marriage, was hosted by the college’s victimology program, the Ottawa police victim crisis unit and the Department of Justice. The workshop marks the fourth year of the college program. It’s a one-year graduate certificate course that takes grads from social work, policing and nursing. The program was created four years ago. Each year, the speaker panel is made up of people who have been victims of violent crime, along with police officers, counsellors and social workers who have worked in various parts of the country’s judicial system.

 

Read more: http://www.emcbarrhaven.ca/20130502/news/College+tackles+’honour+killings’,+Police+see+need+for+education

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