Posts Tagged ‘coerced’

Man may get life for teen forced marriage

Cape Town – Abducted and forced into marriage before being raped several times – this is what happened to a 14-year-old girl at the hands of a Philippi man.

On Monday morning – more than two years after the girl’s ordeal – Mvuleni Jezile, who was convicted for sexually assaulting the Eastern Cape teenager, is due to be sentenced in the Western Cape’s first case of ukuthwala: the traditional practice of kidnapping a young woman in an attempt to force marriage negotiations.

During earlier court proceedings, it emerged that the 30-year-old man had married the pupil in the Eastern Cape without her or her mother’s consent.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesman Eric Ntabazalila said the marriage had been arranged between the girl’s uncle, grandmother and her rapist’s family in 2011.

The court was told Jezile had tried to have sex with the girl, but she refused. He beat her with sticks then threw her into a taxi bound for the Western Cape.

IOL ca p7 Mvuleni Jezile done

Once there, he held her hostage at his home in Brown’s Farm where he raped her several times.

During his first court appearance in the Wynberg Regional Court in February 2012, Jezile pleaded not guilty before magistrate Delena Grewenstein.

But he was convicted in November, after he was found guilty on six counts including three cases of rape, human trafficking and assault.

Read More: http://www.iol.co.za/news/crime-courts/man-may-get-life-for-teen-forced-marriage-1.1637181#.UutklPQW23k

Australian Research Council rejects funding to research growing problem of forced marriages

CRUCIAL funding to research the growing problem of teenage forced marriages was rejected by the under-fire Australian Research Council.

The federal and NSW governments have both questioned the decision to reject funding for the study, saying they fear child-bride marriages are far more common than previously thought. Associate Professor Jennifer Burn from the University of Technology, Sydney and Director of Anti-Slavery Australia, said she applied for funding to explore the issue of forced marriages in NSW, but her application was “knocked back” by the Council earlier this year.

No money to save our child brides

Child bride reveals the dark secret of unspoken crime in Sydney 

The Australian Research Council (ARC) has been accused by the newly-elected federal government of “wasteful” spending on unnecessary projects. This includes grants for research into how people could adapt to climate change through public art, and another project into the meaning of “I” involving a retrospective study of 18th and 19th century German existentialists. Ms Burn said the area of forced marriages was under-researched and her project sought to quantify how prevalent it was in the community. “There’s a lot of work to be done,” Ms Burn told The Sunday Telegraph, adding that in NSW it was widely suspected to be a much bigger problem than on paper.

Read More:  http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/australian-research-council-rejects-funding-to-research-growing-problem-of-forced-marriages/story-fnii5s3y-1226723284497

Forced Marriages – do you know where you stand?

There are many instances where a marriage can be voidable (set aside) or ‘void’ where the marriage is treated as though it has never taken place. Examples include non-consummation of marriage, due to either inability or wilful refusal. There are other reasons relating to unawareness that the bride is already pregnant or that one party has a serious STD. More commonly, these days, it may be that one of the parties may not have the legal capacity to consent to the union or may be entering it under duress or have suffered undue influence.

The latter appears to relate to the recent case highlighted in the Daily Mail involving a sixteen year old girl who had the protection of a Court Order which banned the arrangement of her marriage. The Order was backed by a Power of Arrest. It is alleged that, in spite of the Court Order, the girl was forced to marry a man she had met only once under a threat from her father to kill her (which would apparently be explained as suicide) if she refused to comply. She is reported to have turned up at a local police station in her pyjamas on her wedding night in a distressed state.

The Forced Marriage Unit (FMU) is raising awareness about forced marriages across the public sector to professionals and lay clients alike. Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses (Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 16(2)). FMU goes on to say that No marriage shall be legally entered into without the full and free consent of both parties and a woman’s right to choose a spouse and enter freely into marriage that is central to her life and dignity and equality as a human being (Recommendation 21 Comment Article 16 (1) (b) UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women).

This unfortunate 16 year old lady is due to appear in Court where, presumably, the persons alleged to have threatened her and organised the marriage despite the Court orders and powers of arrest will have to account for their actions. Duress includes actions perpetrated against a victim for physical, psychological, sexual, financial or emotional reasons and such pressure tends to be consistent and wholly unacceptable. In 2008 over 1,600 cases in the UK were reported involving South Asian and other families. It is important to remember that many go unreported. This often starts when the victim is quite young when during school there are often prolonged absences that are not properly explained, requests for extended leave, with the victim showing anxiety as the school holidays and breaks come nearer. Often they are not allowed to join after-school activities or forge a friendship with other children or their families. This can result in self-harm, feelings of depression and isolation and can result in unreasonable restrictions at home. Incidents as being beaten by a parent for ‘looking at a boy’ can often result in confiscation of a mobile phone and being forced to go back to the originating country often to meet the prospective ‘husband’.

 

Read more:  http://www.deferolaw.com/profiles/blogs/forced-marriages-do-you-know-where-you-stand

UK forced marriage victims much younger than previously thought

Foreign Office reveals cases from Italy, Holland, Australia, Indonesia and Nigeria, with one in five victims a man, and ages ranging from five to 87.

Britain’s forced marriage victims are being coerced to marry in more far flung places and at a much younger age than previously thought.

Last year more than half of the 1,500 cases the Foreign Office dealt with were connected to families in Pakistan, but cases also came from Bangladesh, India, Afghanistan, Italy, Holland, Australia, Thailand, Indonesia, Nigeria and Iraq. One in five victims was a man. Ages ranged from five to 87.

In each case of forced marriage, there are often several perpetrators. Yet almost no one is prosecuted in the UK. There is general agreement that forcing a person to marry against their will is a human rights abuse and that the authorities should do everything possible to protect victims from forced marriage. But that’s where the consensus ends. The UK Government is considering whether to make forced marriage a new criminal offence and opinions are divided about the potential risks and benefits.

 

Read more: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/uk-forced-marriage-victims-much-younger-than-previously-thought-7608813.html

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