April 10th, 2014
10:49 AM ET

Drive to end child marriage stalls, but fightback begins

By Gordon Brown, U.N. Special Envoy for Global Education

Editor's note: Gordon Brown is a United Nations Special Envoy on Global Education. He was formerly the UK's prime minister.

It is a descent into barbarism. This month’s plan by Iraqi parliamentarians to legalize girl marriage at nine follows the Pakistan Islamic Council’s demand last month that Pakistan abolish all legal restrictions on child marriage, the revelation that Syrian refugee girls are being sold into marriage against their will and the increased pressure in many African countries to ease the restrictions on selling child brides.

As one who has believed that worldwide disgust at child marriage would end it within our generation, I now find that progress has stalled. In the last few months Mauritania, at the center of allegations of girls’ genital mutilation to make possible the early marriage of eight and nine year olds, has resisted pressure to enforce a legal minimum age for marriage.

Attempts in Yemen to do so have also failed. Even Nigeria has been considering reducing the age of marriage.

In India, the rape of girls has brought millions on to the streets in protest and it has now been exposed as the country with 40% of the world's child brides.

The U.N. says one in nine girls is a bride by the age of 15 and that by 2020 142 million - or one in three girls in developing countries - will be married before they are 18. For example, in Afghanistan 60% are married before they turn 16 and in Niger 74% of girls are married by the age of 18.

Fortunately, the reluctance of governments to end abuses is being met with an even stronger movement from girls themselves.

Their anger is now kicking off a global civil rights struggle to rescue children from exploitation and guarantee them their right to education.

Alongside the Iraqi women’s network, who declared last month's International Women's Day an Iraqi day of mourning, are Nepal’s Common Forum for Kamlari Freedom, the Ugandan Child Protection clubs, the Ghanaian Upper Manya Krobo Rights of the Child Club and Indonesia's Grobogan Child Empowerment Group.

These civil rights movements may not yet be household names but they are borrowing the tactics of the U.S. civil rights movement in defying parents and authorities who try to marry 8, 9 and 10-year-old children off against their will.

Child-marriage-free zones, where girls club together to refuse to be married off, often defying their families' wishes, are springing up in the Indian subcontinent. The first has been formed in Pakistan. In Bangladesh there are now several zones and they are soon to be started in countries like Malawi.

Many of them are linked to the growing global movement, Girls not Brides.

One secure way to prevent child marriage, child labor, child trafficking and discrimination against girls is to ensure we deliver the right of every child to be at school.

On April 10 in Washington, a worldwide emergency coalition for education will be launched. It will show that the answer to ending child marriage is to uphold the right of all children to be free of exploitation and involved in education.

A girl with some education is not only unlikely to be married at 8, 9 or 10 but is also six times less likely to be married by 18.

The coalition will call for four zeroes:
1. zero child marriage
2. zero child labour
3. zero discrimination against girls
4. zero exclusion from education.

It represents the world’s last chance to meet the United Nations' Millennium Development Goal target which after huge initial progress –- getting 40 million children to school –- has stalled.

Now 57 million of the most marginalized children, the boy laborer, the trafficked youngster, the nine-year-old bride and the street kid, do not have anyone to make sure they get into a classroom and are learning.

But the violations of children’s rights can best be ended by ensuring universal education. It is education that unlocks not only the educational potential of a child but progress in health, employment, opportunity and higher standards of living.

Topics: Uncategorized

soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. guest2014

    cut off ALL aid to such countries!

    April 10, 2014 at 2:34 pm | Reply
    • DickPerry

      And that will ensure that they evolve?? LOL..

      April 12, 2014 at 9:00 am | Reply
  2. billinanza

    Yeah, well, lotsa luck.

    April 10, 2014 at 7:43 pm | Reply
  3. Pharaoh

    This is allowed in Islam. Look at this correct hadith.

    The Prophet (ﷺ) wrote the (marriage contract) with `Aisha while she was six years old and consummated his marriage with her while she was nine years old and she remained with him for nine years (i.e. till his death).

    Sahih al-Bukhari 5158

    They consider their prophet to be a role-model, this is why they marry little girls.

    April 10, 2014 at 8:00 pm | Reply
    • DickPerry

      Get over it Islamophob.Its an educational problem and not a religious. If it was a religious problem where in the bible does it say that priest should abuse children as they have?

      April 12, 2014 at 9:02 am | Reply
      • Ramos

        Even if it isn't a religious issue but a cultural issue, many of the countries with problems like this, have Islam as a very dominant religion if not THE religion as a strong presence of Islam usually outlaws other religions. And Pharaoh's quote and info is correct and the pedophile rolemodel, that prophet is, is not helping this issue either.

        Your'e partially right, that Islam does not cover all of these child marriages as countries with a variety of religions have these issues which mostly stems from old times as a guard against the average life expectancy being 29 yrs of age. The problem is that some of the countries that aren't Islamic, points towards Islamic countries to justify these child marriages themselves and some even convert to Islam, just to be protected by the religious unity to keep doing this. It IS a massive issue that such a huge authority and power such as Islam in general, approves of these super-early marriages. Under control they can be okay if not consumated till the girl comes of age at 16/18 but more often than not they are NOT controlled and is a front for child slave sales and subsequent rapes.

        The issue of cause being that modern medicine and eradicating of many mass killer diseases have solved most of this problem, meaning girls should no longer be treated as baby factories.

        April 12, 2014 at 1:18 pm |
      • M

        There is absolutely no doubt that not a single Islamic country will outlaw marriages with girls of nine years age. You need to understand the psyche of people of such countries to know why this is so. For them any questioning of Prophet Mohammed's conduct amounts to declaring war on the entire people. First and foremost the rest of the world needs to do some plainspeak on this and state that they have nothing against the people of such countries but will not respect or accept exploitative actions against children even if they are done by those held in utmost reverence. The reverence needs to be given up in favour of humanity. .

        April 24, 2014 at 6:54 am |
      • PhùngVanVu

        Ok

        August 29, 2014 at 11:11 pm |
    • Karahsi

      Religion in general "allows" a lot of truly asinine things. It's time to put away the old books and start using our minds.

      April 13, 2014 at 3:14 am | Reply
  4. ERGObaby Travel Collection Baby Carrier

    Cute Kid Thursday! Special Sibling Edition Hey got a cute kid? Please email us pic and bio and little Mr. or Mrs Adorable could be featured on My Name is: Caroline HuntI'm:16 monthsI Hail From: San Diego, CAUsually I Can Be Found: Trying to squeeze the kitties, Archie and Frita, or adjusting the ringer volume on the phoneMy Favorite Book: Favorite Pastime: Furniture ClimbingBeloved Toy: Stuffed ElmoPet Peeve: any adult wearing a white coat My Name is: Mirabel HuntI'm: 2 years, 9 mont

    April 11, 2014 at 4:25 am | Reply
  5. John Geheran

    Any laws that would prevent or inhibit child marriages in Islam would be a non-starter. Such laws would be in direct conflict of Islamic sacred texts, ahadith, Shari'a law, et al, and run the risk of exposing a deeply flawed belief system.

    April 11, 2014 at 12:07 pm | Reply
    • guest2014

      "a deeply flawed belief system"...
      if we would have seen the german nazis in such a way, they would rule the world now with their barbarism.
      islam is no better and could not reach the same goal because it was stopped forcibly. the siege of vienna as a historic turning point then.

      this "flawed belief system" must be rooted out, period.

      April 11, 2014 at 10:09 pm | Reply
      • K Williams

        I do believe that this is something that they all need to work on. Children should not have to be forced into marriage at the age of 9. Children around this age should be going to school and getting an education instead of being sold into marriage.

        May 6, 2014 at 12:41 pm |
  6. Edson

    That's their culture, like it or not. The cultures change as time goes by. One day this won't happen anymore. Worse than this is the fact of many pedophiles who rape young girls by planning every little detail, many of them do that in their own families and are not punished by human law, these have no culture, they just do it because they're cruel.

    April 12, 2014 at 12:03 pm | Reply
  7. John Geheran

    As long as Muslims revere Mohammud as the "Perfect,Man" there is virtually no hope that the numerous draconian practices such as child marriage, slavery, stoning, et al, will ever be banned.

    April 12, 2014 at 7:56 pm | Reply
  8. hemant

    All We need to take some serious steps to stop this cruelty against child.Childs are strength of a nation and if a nation suffer through such inhumanity then development and growth of such nation could be in danger.

    May 16, 2014 at 3:48 am | Reply
  9. Air Jordan 2233

    The key word there is We make use of the terms Air Jordan 2233 and in the BDSM community, however they aren meant literally. Unfortunately, slavery does remain in the world we live in, but it illegal (at least on paper) as well as unethical to own another person. So, the way you use those terms within the BDSM community are a kind of code to point the type of relationship energy we've with each other. Be careful on the drive up to Breckenridge. You're driving in snow, now a number of you may con

    May 19, 2014 at 3:50 am | Reply
  10. Dillon Swoap

    chaussures gucci pas cher

    http://www.o7nEu6BYyn.com/o7nEu6BYyn

    September 29, 2016 at 9:24 am | Reply
  11. LAwzvdKqkDo

    eWOdgajX

    December 11, 2020 at 1:33 pm | Reply
  12. detectives privados san javier

    detectives privados torrejón de ardoz

    https://www.argadetectives.com/villaviciosa-de-odon-madrid.html

    December 11, 2020 at 10:27 pm | Reply
  13. eIRLgvBrc

    mlFaOSJXo

    December 14, 2020 at 9:28 am | Reply
  14. Jonathan Vettel

    Enjoyed reading through this, very good stuff, thankyou .

    http://6dollarmillion.xyz

    December 20, 2020 at 2:39 pm | Reply
  15. 700k money system

    Imagine getting hundreds of people flooding your inbox on autopilot, 24/7 with 100 percent commissions of $500 a day. This is made thanks to traffic conveyed on autopilot over various “viral tiers”. More details: https://bit.ly/2YfQFcC

    https://bit.ly/2YfQFcC

    December 26, 2020 at 10:58 am | Reply
  16. hRvtqIFlCZJofBpb

    RlnPmGXBDYTVw

    December 28, 2020 at 7:55 am | Reply
  17. ตู้แปลภาษา

    601539 495420Oh my goodness! a fantastic post dude. Thanks Nevertheless My business is experiencing concern with ur rss . Dont know why Not able to sign up for it. Possibly there is any person obtaining identical rss difficulty? Anyone who knows kindly respond. Thnkx 190750

    January 3, 2021 at 8:08 am | Reply
  18. mơ thấy chim bồ câu đánh con gì

    87825 674541But wanna comment on couple of general points, The internet site style is perfect, the content material material is truly very good : D. 710975

    January 4, 2021 at 7:04 pm | Reply
  19. mơ thấy cháy rừng

    931372 673632Very good written write-up. It is going to be useful to anybody who usess it, including myself. Maintain up the excellent work – canr wait to read a lot more posts. 645274

    January 4, 2021 at 7:07 pm | Reply
  20. nằm mơ thấy cãi nhau với người cùng phái

    842122 18060There is noticeably a great deal to know about this. I believe you made some good points in functions also. 999989

    January 4, 2021 at 9:02 pm | Reply
  21. mơ thấy sếp

    37791 998057Genuinely instructive and superb structure of articles, now thats user friendly (:. 202754

    January 5, 2021 at 7:21 pm | Reply
  22. những cách tỏ tình lãng mạn

    303558 172184Soon after study some of the websites with your internet internet site now, i truly as if your way of blogging. I bookmarked it to my bookmark web site list and will be checking back soon. Pls appear at my site likewise and figure out what you believe. 27156

    January 5, 2021 at 8:12 pm | Reply
  23. mơ thấy con ngựa

    879377 196925I want to thank you for the superb post!! I certainly liked every bit of it. Ive bookmarked your web internet site so I can take a look at the latest articles you post later on. 321469

    January 5, 2021 at 8:45 pm | Reply
  24. mơ thấy cầu tiêu

    535169 652781After examine a couple of of the weblog posts on your web site now, and I genuinely like your manner of blogging. I bookmarked it to my bookmark site record and will probably be checking back soon. Pls take a look at my internet page as effectively and let me know what you feel. 848266

    January 5, 2021 at 10:43 pm | Reply
  25. nằm mơ thấy hoa sen

    281258 965751As I website owner I believe the content material material here is really superb, thanks for your efforts. 322907

    January 5, 2021 at 11:10 pm | Reply
  26. mơ thấy thầy bói

    38775 964870Wow, superb weblog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you make blogging look effortless. The overall look of your site is magnificent, as effectively as the content! xrumer 432123

    January 5, 2021 at 11:38 pm | Reply
  27. mo thay be gai

    560873 795585I adore foregathering valuable info, this post has got me even a lot more info! . 510637

    January 6, 2021 at 6:38 pm | Reply
  28. người yêu không tôn trọng mình

    227245 131695There is visibly a bunch to know about this. I believe you produced various very good points in features also. 208633

    January 6, 2021 at 7:33 pm | Reply
  29. mơ thấy chiến tranh

    235709 934220Maintain in touch whilst functioning from your own home workplace with out all with the hassle of purchasing or procurment costly workplace equipment. Debtors are allowed to apply with their a bad credit score background whenever. 959957

    January 6, 2021 at 7:56 pm | Reply
  30. con ếch số mấy

    57725 879307After examine a couple of of the weblog posts on your internet website now, and I truly like your manner of blogging. I bookmarked it to my bookmark website record and will probably be checking back soon. Pls take a look at my web page as effectively and let me know what you believe. 813986

    January 6, 2021 at 8:16 pm | Reply
  31. Cole Bakkala

    I always visit new blog everyday and i found your blog.*~~;~

    http://yourmatrixcashmachine.com

    January 11, 2021 at 9:12 pm | Reply
  32. yRXmZFPQ

    HbtXKqMykZs

    January 12, 2021 at 6:32 am | Reply
  33. Irvin Walder

    Best Marketing Services – Cheapest on Market. SMM Supreme is the Top 5 Best Social Media Website in the World. Best Quality-Price Ratio on the market with 714,928 orders until now. – Facebook Fan Page Likes for $4.50/1000 – Instagram Followers for $0.78/1000 – Youtube Views: $1.62/1000 – Twitter followers: $2.10/1000 – Paypal Deposit – Bitcoin Deposit – Fast order processing – 1 Hour Delivery (Click on the link in the profile for more details)

    https://bit.ly/3iOPatX

    January 26, 2021 at 4:43 pm | Reply
  34. Brock Pratcher

    Do you want get more social network traffic, likes, subscribers? Our Company provide SMM Services that means (Social Media Marketing) that is directly using social network websites such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to promote a website. High Quality Services / Our prices are the cheapest in the market, starting at $0.01 / 24/7 Support / API Support for panel leaders / Best prices

    https://bit.ly/2Hnl7vE

    January 26, 2021 at 10:33 pm | Reply
  35. Zack Scharnberg

    Do you want get more social network traffic, likes, and retweets? SMM Supreme uses his own panel system to generate social media traffic to any website. Best Quality-Price Ratio on the market with 714928 orders until now. – Facebook Fan Page Likes: $4.50/1000 – Instagram Followers: $0.78/1000 – Youtube Views: $1.62/1000 – Twitter followers: $2.10/1000 – Paypal Deposit – Payeer Deposit – Automatic order processing – 30 minutes to send to customers

    https://bit.ly/3iVO2Vh

    January 27, 2021 at 1:27 am | Reply
  36. Jenna Geberth

    Do you want get more social network traffic, likes, subscribers? Our Company provide SMM Services that means (Social Media Marketing) that is directly using social network websites such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to promote a website. High Quality Services / Our prices are the cheapest in the market, starting at $0.01 / 24/7 Support / API Support for panel leaders / Best prices

    https://bit.ly/3iOPatX

    January 27, 2021 at 1:01 pm | Reply
  37. Silas Sortore

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    January 28, 2021 at 10:13 pm | Reply
  38. malatya escort

    esenyurt escort bayanar bu sitede üstelik hepsi ücretsiz...

    http://www.cuba.tc/escort-kategori/malatya-escort-bayan

    February 4, 2021 at 5:37 pm | Reply
  39. iskenderun escort

    iskenderun escort bayanlarla tanışmak için bu siteyi ziyaret edebilirsiniz.

    http://www.iskenderunescort.xyz

    February 5, 2021 at 4:50 am | Reply
  40. mersin escort

    esenyurt escort bayanar bu sitede üstelik hepsi ücretsiz...

    http://www.elitescorthatun.com/ad-category/mersin-escort/

    February 5, 2021 at 11:28 am | Reply
  41. Collin Juza

    Earn $200/Day With Our Elite Passive Income System – Best Autopilot income system 2021

    https://warriorplus.com/o2/a/nndsr/0

    February 5, 2021 at 7:45 pm | Reply
  42. www.gu8.pw

    iskenderun escort bayanlarla tanışmak için bu siteyi ziyaret edebilirsiniz.

    http://www.gu8.pw

    February 6, 2021 at 10:49 pm | Reply
  43. www.iskenderunescort.xyz

    iskenderun escort bayanlarla tanışmak için bu siteyi ziyaret edebilirsiniz.

    http://www.iskenderunescort.xyz

    February 7, 2021 at 12:24 am | Reply
  44. iskenderun escort

    iskenderun escort bayanlarla tanışmak için bu siteyi ziyaret edebilirsiniz.

    http://www.gu8.pw

    February 7, 2021 at 7:34 pm | Reply
  45. adana escort

    iskenderun escort bayanlarla tanışmak için bu siteyi ziyaret edebilirsiniz.

    http://www.cuba.tc/escort-kategori/adana-escort-bayan

    February 7, 2021 at 11:17 pm | Reply
  46. malatya escort

    malatya escort bayanlarla tanışmak için bu siteyi ziyaret edebilirsiniz.

    https://www.yukle.tc

    February 16, 2021 at 3:56 pm | Reply
  47. 1000000GSA Backlinks

    1,000,000 GSA Live Backlinks High Quality SEO links + Bad Links Removal: https://www.seoclerk.com/Link-Building/842081/1-000-000-GSA-Live-Backlinks-High-Quality-SEO-links-Bad-Links-Removal

    https://www.seoclerk.com/Traffic/840816/1500-USA-Visitors-Daily-For-30-Days-From-Niche-Targeted-Organic-Traffic-From-Google

    February 16, 2021 at 7:35 pm | Reply
  48. Best Socialmediaservices

    Social network traffic Facebook likes Twitter Followers Instagram Followers and much more. Our Website: https://smmsupreme.com/

    https://bit.ly/3iYGuRO

    February 19, 2021 at 2:31 pm | Reply
  49. iMTDQKSlrJ

    yrJhFzaAZHnI

    February 22, 2021 at 12:01 am | Reply
  50. KMQsJxVkvXo

    lSoAhJIEuszFH

    February 23, 2021 at 12:17 pm | Reply
  51. Jada Manzanilla

    I actually wanted to write down a comment to appreciate you for those remarkable guidelines you are giving out here. My prolonged internet lookup has at the end been honored with excellent facts to write about with my family. I 'd state that that most of us site visitors are really blessed to live in a fantastic website with many awesome people with very helpful basics. I feel quite privileged to have discovered your webpages and look forward to plenty of more thrilling minutes reading here. Thanks a lot again for everything.

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    March 4, 2021 at 10:24 am | Reply

Leave a Reply to DickPerry


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.