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Juvenile wives of Saudi Arabia2012-04-27 14:16
Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia has issued a fatwa for permission to give girls in marriage from ten years. This decision is a response to a question about the Saudi women's right to choose husband by their own. In general, the fatwa of Mufti has legitimized the country's tradition. Here, an eight-year girl can be given in marriage to old men. The consent of the bride, of course, may be taken in account. But her father takes the final decision.
The laws of Saudi Arabia provide and even encourage the practice of early marriage of girls. "Early marriage is always encouraged from ancient times due to the social, economic, political and religious reasons", Professor of King Saud University Riyadh Mansour Bin Askar said in an interview with Arab journalists. "During the wars, early marriage helps to strengthen the family clans and the influence of tribes, which are always evaluated on their size. It's not right to look for pros and cons in early marriage, since each girl has a unique character. Importan thing is not to cause harm to young bride from a medical point of view", Professor Mansour Bin Askar said. According to him, mutual agreement of the parties is important in the early marriage. Especially
, the consent of a young bride, who must confirm her decision before the cadi - Sharia judge.
The fatwa of the Mufti, which has legalized marriage of 10-year-old girls, reflects the realities of life of the Saudi kingdom. Being a child, many Saudi girls already know their future husband. Suitors are selected by girls' fathers. If a girl is a devout Muslim and obedient daughter, her father can choose a relatively young and well-to-do man. If the daughter shows obstinacy, first available Muslim who agrees to marry her can become her husband.
In this respect, Saudi Arabia has also retained the literal interpretation of Sharia law. This is its different from other Muslim countries that have long chosen the other way. For example, Jordan, UAE and Tunisia have established a clear minimum threshold for women for marriage - 15 years. In Shiite Iran, the freedom of women had reached the point that men are afraid of being a victim of sexual discrimination. Arabist, a specialist in political processes in the Arab world, Leonid Isaev told GTimes about this.