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Newspaper article:12-year-old Saudi girl in divorce battle with 80-year-old husband

February 11, 2010

February 9, 2010

Read the full article in Timesonline

A 12-year-old girl married to a 80-year-old man wants to get divorced in Saudi Arabia. The father allowed her marriage in exchange for 85,000 riyals (£14,500). In Saudi Arabia there isn’t a minimum legal age to get married; but a draft law, which could forbid these kinds of marriage, is being studied. If this law was approved the minimum legal age could be between 16 and 18 years. The Human Rights Commission has paid a lawyer to defend the girl. There have  been other cases such as the rejection to annulate a marriage between an 8-year-old girl and a man in his forties or the successful divorce of a 10-year-old girl from a man in his thirties. It also happens in other places such as poor zones in Saudi Arabia, Yemen or Niger.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. esterot permalink
    February 12, 2010 11:12 pm

    It’s amazing the situation some children live in some countries, and above all, it’s incredible what a father can do for money.
    I suppose that in some countries people live in very bad conditions and the situation is difficult for them, so they feel forced to do things like this. But she’s only12 years old and the man 80!!! How can a father allow that?

  2. marisa permalink*
    February 14, 2010 8:55 pm

    Thanks Carles for adding this summary. I know it has meant a great effort to you, but it has been worth it. I hadn’t hear about this case and as Ester, I find it shocking.

  3. Esther permalink
    February 15, 2010 2:17 pm

    It´s incredible!. Lately I was reading many thing about this country and I am really surprised and schocked. I can´t understand how people, parents, more exactly, can act in this way. We have to be grateful for been born in our country …

  4. Carles Peñarrocha Martínez permalink
    February 16, 2010 12:23 am

    First of all, thanks for your words Marisa. I still am surprised when I read some article like this one; but, unfortunately, it really happens. Misery and different concepts of life can cause these, for us, terrible situations. Do you know that in Saudi Arabia was abolished slavery only in 1962 and in Mauritania in 1981, but it remains hidden? Do you know that in Mali there are still slave trade on a small scale nowadays? I think it’s necessary to realize that human rights are more important than cultural and religious differences.

  5. janea permalink
    February 18, 2010 4:59 am

    I agree with you Carles, sometimes human rights must be first above of other considerations. Unfortunately there are lots of countries where women is still submitted to the family power, which at the end is the men power. Parents, husbands or politic power. But we should remember that our civil law had been changed about 77 or 78 of the last century. And in that code women in Spain had the same consideration that a dog.

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