Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Child-Marriage and Pedophilia in Muslim Societies: Will It Come To an End

In my previous article, I have mentioned that aged and wealthy Arabs from the Gulf countries come to India, mainly to Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, to prey on teenage girls, by paying fat cash as dowry to their parents. They generally enter into temporary marriage contracts (Mutah) and return home after a brief stay.In January, 2007, a 60 year old Arab married 3 girls, Afreen, Farheena and Sultana, at a single sitting (within ten minutes), in Hyderabad.

In another incident in May 2004, an old man called Muhammad Zafer Yaqub Hassan al-Jorani came from Sharjah to Hyderabad to undergo a cataract operation. On May 7, he married Haseena Begum, a 19 year old girl and after two days he divorced her. On May 24, he married another 16 year old girl Ruksana Begum. Haseena, ignoring even threat to her life, went to a local police station to narrate her story and within an hour police arrested Jorani. Police also arrested someone called Shamsuddin who was alleged to have played the role of a mediator and received a cash of Rs 40,000 from Jorani and handed over the money to the parents of Haseena as mehr. It is to be mentioned here that Jorani, at his Sharjah residence, had two wives and 11 children.

While commenting on these affairs, a reader wrote, “In child marriage of the other type, where young girl marries an old man, is prevalent in Muslim society in India. I am an ex-Muslim from India and such facts I have seen in my own eyes. I tried to alert police but was threatened by police themselves with dire consequences, even death, and so I kept quiet.

In various cities, where there are Muslim ghettos, this happens regularly. Muslims condemn prostitution but allow legal prostitution through temporary marriage or Mutah. Young girls of16-18-year-old are married to aged Arabs, for a stipulated period, simply for money. Mullahs make the old Arab and young girls sign nikahnama and talaknama at the same time.

Parents get money and send their daughter as a prostitute to the Arab to be raped. The Arab then divorces her after a stipulated time that may vary from a few hours to a few days. Things move fast because the next victim is waiting in the queue. Generally, beautiful girls are entered in the waiting list and many of them have to entertain their (temporary) rapist husbands every year. The month of Ramadan is busiest period of this business when many Indian girls are sent to Dubai and from Dubai to elsewhere, to be sexually assaulted by the Arabs, after Ramadan fasting.

Generally, the girls earns anywhere from Rs 15,000 to Rs 500,000, depending on the skill of the negotiator (middleman) and also on the beauty of the girl. If she happens to be a virgin, she earns a lot more, as Arabs are ready to spend fabulous money for a first time sex.

Now-a-days, there are plastic surgeons, I know, are earning lot from the pimps by turning the girls virgin again by attaching a layer of fresh skin to their private parts and thus making an artificial hymen. This happens repeatedly for many girls till she gets tired or fails to find a new (temporary) husband.
Local police, political leaders and NGOs get their share too and keep silence. I can even spell names of some people, who are involved in the racket. But my life is already under threat due to disclosing the truth about Islam. I also don’t want annoy the local police because they may just shoot me in a false encounter and get paid by the racket leaders. Such an incident happened earlier. This is, indeed, another horrible face of Islam.”

Another reader commented, “Dear old Muslims in the Middle East who are planning to marry a girl as young as 6 yrs old to be your bride, kindly let me have the honour to ask you a very simple question. Try imagining that the young 6-year-old bride whom you’re going to marry soon, is your daughter or granddaughter or great granddaughter or great-great granddaughter and that you are going to penetrate her very small vagina with your big xxxxx. Do you feel it nauseating or disgusting at the very thought of it? I believe that for those old Muslims who have some human conscience or fear of God will be kind enough to let all these young girls go.”

Another reader commented “I believe that for those old Muslims who have some human conscience or fear of God will be kind enough to let all these young girls go. As for those old Muslims who still can’t let all these young girls go because of their super strong sexual needs, may I suggest a much better option for you which could help satisfy all your sexual needs or cravings and that is, to go and buy a sex doll from any sex shop and sell all these erotic products. Don’t you think that your Allah will be pleased with my kind suggestion here which is better than destroying all those young innocent girls’ life? Thank you in advance for heeding my advice to give all these young innocent muslimahs a chance to live life to the fullest.”

In this context, it should be mentioned that, in Islam, there is no place for ethics, morality or conscience. Islamic morality is quite different and stands on two notions – Halal (permitted) and Haram (not permitted). To a sane non-Muslim individual, marrying a 6 or 8-year-old girl by an over 50 man, may appear to be highly immoral, unethical and vulgar. But to a Muslim, such an act is Halal, as Prophet Muhammad had done it. So, application of personal sense morality and ethics does not play any role. Whatever the Prophet did is Halal and every Muslim has the right to emulate the Prophet.

Another reader wrote, “These old wolfs who practice such disgusting acts by following their Prophet are wild animals. They don’t even deserve to live. These innocent young brides should be given some poison by their mothers which they can mix with some food and feed their wonderful husbands on the first night and finish them off. The Human Rights activists can defend them saying these children are minor and they do not know what they are doing. Even few years of jail sentence is much better than living with these animals. If more and more child-brides start rebelling by giving the due punishment to these animals, this cruel practice will vanish.”

Out of court settlement allows Saudi girl 8 to divorce 50 year old husband:
As mentioned in the previous article that a Saudi judge refused to terminate the marital bond between an 8-year-old girl and her 47-year-old husband. The girl’s father, according to the attorney, took US$13,000 from the man and arranged the marriage in order to settle his debts with him, who is also a close friend of his. On the other hand, the girl’s mother expressed her determination to fight the case and continue to seek daughter’s divorce.

According to a press report, appeared on April 30, 2009, from Hadeel Al-Shalchi of the Associated Press, the mother of the girl had been succeeded to obtain a divorce for her daughter through out of the court negotiation. “The girl was allowed to divorce the about 50-year-old man, whom she was married to by force, in August last year, and after an out-of-court settlement, a divorce could be obtained in the case”, said her lawyer, Abdulla al-Jeteli.

The reader may recall that a court in the central Oneiza region previously rejected a request by the girl’s mother for a divorce and ruled that the girl would have to wait until she reached puberty to file a petition. It has been mentioned earlier that there are no laws in Saudi Arabia defining the minimum age for marriage for girls. Though, according to the Shariah Law, a woman’s consent is legally required, most of the marriage officials don’t seek it.

(A mass child marriage ceremony in Gaza, sponsored HAMAS,on July 30, 2009, 450 child-brides were married to much older grooms)

Recently, due to increased social awakening, there has been a thrust by Saudi human rights groups to define the minimum age of marriage for girls and put an end to the shameful tradition of child marriage. Sohaila Zain al-Abdeen, one of the most renowned human rights activists in Saudi Arabia, was optimistic that the girl’s divorce would be an important precedence and help efforts to get a new law passed enforcing a minimum marriage age of 18 for the girls. “Unfortunately, some fathers trade their daughters. They are weak people who are sometimes in need of money and forget their roles as parents.” she told The Associated Press.

But it was not clear whether the husband got back the money, nearly 50,000 riyals, or about US$13,350, he paid to the father of the girl as dowry, the lawyer said.

This was not the only incident of marrying off an 8-year-old girl to an old man, in the kingdom that attracted public attention. Saudi newspapers have highlighted several cases in which young girls were married off to much older men. In one incident a 15-year-old girl, whose father serving prison terms with a death penalty, married her off to a cellmate.

An 8 yr old Yemeni girl forced to marry a man Nujood Ali, more than 3 times her age. He used to beat and rape the 8-year-old victim. Ultimately, she escaped, and found a human rights lawyer to help her get a divorce. Under Sharia Law, her husband received compensation from the family, and was never prosecuted. (See Videos –

Zahida Minhas, a 16-year old girl who was sold into a forced marriage by her mother. Somehow, she could escape her husband’s house. Now she is 9 months pregnant and living in a safe house. But as her delivery date approaches, she fears that her “husband” will find and kill her.

A 12-year old Muslim girl in Afghanistan fears for her life from the pedophile husband she was forced to marry. Her husband attacked her with a knife and injured her hand. She is seeking a divorce from her cruel and pedophile husband. There is, indeed, no end to these type incidents in the Muslim societies. And, in fact, Saudi Arabia is the main source inspiration for child-marriage and pedophilia in the world community of Muslims.

But it is good sign that Saudi Arabia has come under increasing criticism at home and abroad for permitting child marriages and pedophilia. The United States, a close ally of the conservative Muslim kingdom, has called child marriage a “clear and unacceptable” violation of human rights. But Saudi Arabia’s conservative Muslim clergy is opposing the drive to end child marriages. It has been mentioned earlier that in January, 2009, the kingdom’s most senior cleric said it was permissible for 10-year-old girls to marry and those who believe they are too young are doing injustice to the girl. “After all, Sharia Law has been ordained and hence cannot do injustice to women”, he said.

There is another ray of hope, Some in the Saudi government appear to support the movement to set a minimum age for marriage. The kingdom’s new justice minister was quoted in mid-April as saying that the government was carrying out a study on underage marriage that would include regulations.

But there are no statistical data to show how many marriages involving children are performed in Saudi Arabia every year. Activists say the girls are given away in return for hefty marriage dowry or as a result of long-standing custom in which a father promises his infant daughters and sons to cousins out of a belief that marriage will protect them from illicit relationships.

It has been mentioned earlier that there are no laws in Saudi Arabia defining the minimum age for marriage for girls and according to the Saudi clerics, one can enter into a marriage contract even with 1-year-old girl. Though a woman’s consent is legally required, most of the marriage officials, called ma’thoons do not seek it. Only these ma’thoons have the legal authority to preside over marriage contract ceremonies. They seek consent of the groom and the woman’s guardian and if they approve of the marriage, the ma’thoon proceeds to complete the ceremony by signing the marriage papers. But, as stated above, the Saudi government does not keep any statistical record to show how many Saudi children are married off per year, which it can easily do by collecting data from these ma’thoons.

Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, the Kingdom's grand mufti Says, “It's an injustice to NOT marry girls aged 10”.

In this context it may be mentioned that the Arabic word “nikah” does not mean what the word marriage stands for. According to Mohammad Asghar, the word “nikah” has been derived from “nokh”, which refers to woman’s vagina and hence the word “nikah” stands for penetration of woman’s vagina (see: The Meaning of Nikah in Islam).

Child marriage that sparked uproar in Saudi Arabia:
According to a news appeared on August 6, 2008, in the Riyadh based dailies Al-Watan and. Al-Harbi, a nikah between an 11-year-old boy Muhammad al-Rashidi and a 10-year-old girl has been declared by Muraiziq al-Rashidi, the groom’s father. But the ceremony has been strongly opposed by the governor of the northern province of Hail, who considered the elementary school student too young to marry. Opposition has also came from some human rights groups.

“We are studying this issue so we can put an end to this phenomenon,” said Zuhair al-Harithi, boardmember of the Human Rights Commission, a human rights group run by the government. “These marriages violate international agreements the kingdom has signed”, he said. Though the incident created a stir in the kingdom, Sheik Muhammad al-Nujaimi, a strong opponent of child marriage, said, “But the phenomenon is not new.” He and other clerics, activists and writers have requested the government for issuing a new law setting a minimum age for marriage and to resolve differences among religious authorities over the issue. “There are different (religious) opinions regarding such marriages, which is why we need the government to settle the issue through a new legislation,” said al-Nujaimi.

Activists say that incidents of this kind of marriage between a young girl and a young boy are not so high in Saudi Arabia. These are the result of long-standing custom in which a father promises his infant daughters and sons to cousins out of a belief that such a marriage will protect them from illicit relationships. Muraiziq al-Rashidi, the father of the 11-year-old boy’s said he may delay but not cancel his son’s marriage. “God willing, we will hold the wedding next year,” he said. It has been pointed out earlier that, Ahmad Al-Muabi, a marriage official, defended the practice of child marriage by saying that, “A man can enter into a marriage contract even with a one-year-old girl, not to mention nine years, seven years or eight years. This is just a contract indicating consent.”

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However, In the midst of total darkness, one finds a ray of hope in two incidents, which are discussed below.

An old man marrying a child bride in Saudi Arabia

A 12-year-old Module body
Islamic Voice (IV) is a Bangalore based monthly. This year’s (2010 AD) February edition IV carried a startling news that said, “Sheikh Abdullah Al-Mane’, a member of the Board of Senior Ulema and an Advisor to the Royal Court in Saudi Arabia, has said that ‘Holy Prophet’s Marriage with Ayesha (RA) cannot be a precedence’. Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) marriage to Ayesha when she was nine years old cannot be used as justification for child marriage today due to the “different circumstances” of the time, said a news report in the Jeddah based Saudi Gazette.”

“According to Sheikh Al-Mane’, when Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) was contemplating marrying off his daughter he was unable to find anyone better than the Prophet (pbuh). It is impossible to use the marriage of Ayesha, the ‘Mother of Believers’ (May Allah be pleased with her) as a measure for child marriage because of the incompatibility of the conditions and circumstances,” Sheikh Al-Mane’ said”, the news continued.

Today, child marriage is an issue that has come to the fore in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, particularly after the incident in which a 12-year-old girl successfully divorced her 80-year-old husband in Buraidah, as discussed above. “A court in Qassim is scheduled to look into the case on Monday, while the Human
Rights Commission has also set up a Shariah specialist team to investigate and meet with the marriage official who conducted the marriage rites”, report said.

The report also said that, “Sheikh Al-Mane urged scholars and preachers to take responsibility in making parents aware of the social and mental damage caused by the marriage of minors.”

“It is a grave error to burden a child with responsibilities beyond her years,” the Sheikh said. “Marriage should be put off until the wife is of a mentally and physically mature age and can care for both herself and her family,” he added. “We need a law banning and preventing the marriage of under-18s,” said Mufleh Al-Qahtani, Chairman of the National Society for Human Rights, which has taken part in drawing up a law to protect children and is pushing for its legal approval. (



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