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Child marriage in Egypt triggers outcry

23-Oct-2016 :

Cairo: A wedding of a boy and a girl in a Delta village has triggered an outcry in Egypt, prompting child right advocates to demand a tougher penalty against child marriages.

Families of the bride and the groom — aged 12 and 10 respectively — allegedly held a lavish party to celebrate their unlawful marriage in the village of Al Ma’sara in Dakahlia province, around 120km north of Cairo.

Singers and belly dancers performed at the well-attended ceremony, Egyptian media reported, dubbing the newly-weds the world’s youngest spouses. Images of the couple, a seventh grader bridegroom and a fifth grader bride, went viral online showing the little couple sitting next to each other during the purported party.

The groom’s 35-year-old father was quoted in local newspapers as saying that he decided to get his son married because he was eager to attend his wedding party and to “feel joy of seeing his children” early in life. The child bride appeared at the party clad in a red dress, rather than the white gown traditionally worn at weddings, so as to avoid trouble with authorities, witnesses claimed.

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