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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.


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