Worldwide, more than 60 million women aged 20–24 were married before they reached the age of 18. The extent of child marriage varies substantially between countries, but about half of the girls who are affected live in South Asia.
Child marriage is a violation of child rights, compromising the development of girls and often resulting in premature pregnancy and social isolation. Child marriage is becoming less common overall, but the pace of change is slow. In 34 of the 55 countries with comparable data from two recent surveys, there has been no significant change in the percentage of women aged 20–24 married by 18 – and only 5 countries experienced a decrease of more than 10 per ...view middle of the document...
Statistics and recorded data?
Who are responsible for carrying out this practice?
How it could be controlled?
International organisation, NGOs working against this practice?
Child marriages: 39,000 every day
More than 140 million girls will marry between 2011 and 2020
Joint news release Every Woman Every Child/Girls Not Brides/PMNCH/United Nations Foundation/UNFPA/UNICEF/UN Women/WHO/World Vision/World YWCA/
7 March 2013 | NEW YORK -Between 2011 and 2020, more than 140 million girls will become child brides, according to United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
If current levels of child marriages hold, 14.2 million girls annually or 39 000 daily will marry too young.
Furthermore, of the 140 million girls who will marry before they are 18, 50 million will be under the age of 15.
Despite the physical damage and the persistent discrimination to young girls, little progress has been made toward ending the practice of child marriage. In fact, the problem threatens to increase with the expanding youth population in developing world.
“Child marriage is an appalling violation of human rights and robs girls of their education, health and long-term prospects,” says Babatunde Osotimehin, M.D, Executive Director, UNFPA. “A girl who is married as a child is one whose potential will not be fulfilled. Since many parents and communities also want the very best for their daughters, we must work together and end child marriage.”
Girls married young are more vulnerable to intimate partner violence and sexual abuse than those who marry later.
"Complications of pregnancy and childbirth are the leading cause of death in young women aged 15–19. Young girls who marry later and delay pregnancy beyond their adolescence have more chances to stay healthier, to better their education and build a better life for themselves and their families,” says Flavia Bustreo, M.D., Assistant Director-General for Family, Women’s and Children’s Health at the World Health Organization. "We have the means at our disposal to work together to stop child marriage.”
On March 7, a special session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) will focus on child marriage. The Governments of Bangladesh, Canada and Malawi will jointly sponsor the session. It is held in support of Every Woman Every Child, a movement spearheaded by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon which aims to save the lives of 16 million women and children by 2015.
That session will address the problems created by early marriages and ways to prevent them. Mereso Kiluso, a Tanzanian mother of five now in her 20s, who was married at 14 to an abusive man in his 70s, will describe her experience.
If child marriage is not properly addressed, UN Millennium Development Goals 4 & 5 – calling for a three-fourths reduction in maternal mortality and a two-thirds reduction in child deaths by 2015 – will not be met.
Child marriage – defined as marriage before the age of 18 – applies to both boys and girls, but...