Sunday, 19 October 2014

Father arrested after girl, 11, forced to marry



A father will appear in an Ivory Coast court on Wednesday after forcing his 11-year-old daughter into marriage, judicial sources said on Friday.

The young girl was married in a ceremony on Thursday. The identity of her husband, who was represented by his relatives at the wedding, is not known and he will not face prosecution, police sources said.
The case came to light after authorities were tipped off by a NGO, said the judicial source. ‘It was lucky for us. Due to an NGO we were informed of the case. Usually people refuse to denounce child marriage,’ said the source, adding that any subsequent trial would ‘serve as an example’.

However, the same source did not disclose the specific charges being brought against the accused, a 37-year-old father-of-two. He is being held in Bouake, Ivory Coast’s second city.

Marrying young in the Ivory Coast is not unusual, with 12 percent of all Ivorians being wed before they are 15 and 36 percent before the age of 18, according to a soon-to-be-released UNICEF report, excerpts of which have been obtained by AFP.

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