Forced marriage

From ArticleWorld


Traditionally, a forced marriage was used to describe a kind of arranged marriage. In an arranged marriage, one or both parties would be married without his or her consent or against his or her desires. It is performed under duress and without the free will of both parties.

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Western views

Today, in Western societies, forced marriages are often considered a human rights abuse. That’s because, according to modern views, the principles of a forced marriage violate freedom and the autonomy of individuals.

Victims

Women of Asian origin are frequent victims in the West. Men, however, are also forced into marriage as a matter of family pride. This can be to fulfill the wishes of one’s parents or to meet some sort of social obligation. A victim can feel social or physical pressure. In some cases, victims are tricked into going to another country and fall prey as a result of abduction, coercion, inducements, deception and fear. A marriage can be forced between children, or between a child and an adult. Close relatives may be forced into marriage, often resulting in abnormalities and miscarriages when pregnancy occurs. Forced marriages are considered domestic violence, as victims often suffer physical violence, rape, false imprisonment, abduction, sexual, mental and emotional abuse and enslavement. At times, murder may occur.

Around the world

Forced marriage is still prevalent in many parts of the world today. In fact, it holds a significant presence in the Middle East, South Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa.

Prevention

If an individual suspects that he or she may be forced into a marriage it is suggested that they avoid foreign travel and keep all of their documents close at hand. They should know where their country’s embassy is located and have a supply of emergency cash in case an escape is necessary.