Child marriage violates girls' rights, say Pakatan women reps

Published date01 July 2018
Publication titleMalay Mail Online

Child marriage is ethically wrong and unlawful, Pakatan Harapan Wanita representatives said today.

Their statements followed the controversial marriage of an 11-year-old Thai girl to a 41-year-old Kelantanese man in Thailand last month.

'Child marriage violates girls' rights to health, education and opportunity as it traps these girls in a cycle of poverty and violence.

'Many child wives are exposed to repeated pregnancies and childbirth before they are physically and psychologically ready,'' DAP Wanita national assistant publicity secretary Syerleena Abdul Rashid said in a statement.

Syerleena also said it is ethically and psychologically wrong when an adult thinks that it is acceptable to marry a minor and said marriage is a legal contract that should only be reserved for adults who have reached both emotional and physical maturity.

With Malaysia practising both civil and Syariah judiciary system, Muslims living in the country are often caught between the two courts, said Syerleena.

This is made worse as several cultural, religious and traditional beliefs fuel the continuation of child marriage in the country, said Syerleena, with the justifications to do so often made by exploiting religious interpretation.

'Early marriages have no place in Islam and more so in this country because Islam prohibits doing anything that causes harm either to oneself or to others but most importantly, parents are obligated to protect their children from...

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