Early Marriage

The United Nations defines early marriage as any marriage contract in which one or both parties have not reached the age of 18. This type of marriage is considered forced, as neither party or both have personally expressed their full and free consent to the marriage. Child marriage is considered a form of forced marriage, as one or both parties have not reached the age of 18

Risks of early marriage

– Early marriage leads to educational challenges, as individuals may cease continuous education to fulfill marital responsibilities.
– Young couples may face financial difficulties due to lack of financial preparedness.
– Women may be at risk of health complications related to early pregnancy, childbirth, malnutrition, and low weight.
– Emotional and psychological pressures accompany life changes and early family responsibilities, leading to risks of emotional stress and marital conflicts.

Causes of early marriage

– Poverty remains one of the significant factors behind early marriage, as boys may receive dowry or material possessions in exchange for young girls.
– Cultural norms and traditions contribute to high rates of early marriage, including concerns about honor and preserving the girl’s reputation through family support.
– Gender inequality and inadequate laws in many countries allowing child marriage contribute to the prevalence of early marriage.

Legal age for marriage in Iraq

The Personal Status Law sets the legal age for marriage at 18 years, or 15 years with permission from a judge, based on “legal puberty and physical fitness.” This provision creates a legal loophole and violates international law and best practices. Despite calls for amendments to Personal Status Law No. 188 of 1959 by human rights and feminist advocates, it remains in effect and applies to all Iraqis.


Check Also

Relinquishment of Inheritance Violates HLP Rights for Women

The relinquishment of inheritance involves an agreement between heirs before a Sharia judge in which …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *