UNITED KINGDOM--An alarming number of under-age girls – some as young as nine – are being forced into marriage in Islington [a neighborhood in London], according to a leading campaign group.
The Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation (IKWRO) claim that at least 30 girls in the borough were forced into marriage in 2010.
The practice was condemned by the Imam of Finsbury Park Mosque, who said such marriages were against Islam and “unacceptable”.
He pledged to invalidate any marriage which he said were carried out by “back-street Imams”.
IKWRO, which made headlines last month when they revealed there had been almost 3,000 “honour-based” violence cases in 2010, has shown the Tribune records which revealed at least three 11-year-old girls and two nine-year-olds had been forced into marriage with older men within Islington. The oldest girls involved were 16.
They have warned that hundreds of Islington girls could be suffering sexual, emotional and physical scars as a result of the child marriages every year and are calling for teachers, social workers and police to be better trained to spot and manage the abuse.
Information from the Ministry of Justice, following a Freedom of Information request, revealed that 32 Forced Marriage Protection Order applications were made for children under 16 in Britain last year.
Six of these were made for under-16s within Islington at the Royal Courts of Justice, although these were not necessarily made for Islington residents.
At the Islington court, “five or fewer” orders were made to protect children between the ages of 9-11.
The orders are a form of injunction that threaten legal punishment if marriage takes place due to emotional or physical force.
In most cases, the children fear they will be killed if they reveal the truth to anybody, while others believe they will be separated from their families and taken into social services’ care.
Dianna Nammi, director of IKWRO, explained that the girls are married in a mosque’s sharia court. This means they are not legally married according to British law, rendering the Home Office unable to recognise or prove the abuse.
“They are still expected to carry out their wifely duties, though, and that includes sleeping with their husband,” she said.
“They have to cook for them, wash their clothes, everything. They are still attending schools in Islington, struggling to do their primary school homework, and at the same time being practically raped by a middle-aged man regularly and being abused by their families. So they are a wife, but in a primary school uniform.
“The reason it doesn’t get out is because they are too terrified to speak out, and also the control their families have over them is impossible to imagine if you’re not going through it. The way it is covered up is so precise, almost unspeakable.” (Read more at Islington Tribune.)
Monday, 30 January 2012
Growing Number of Child Brides Among Muslims ... in London
Posted by Bluepanic at 00:27