TOLOnews.com, April 13, 2016
Girl Seeks Divorce After Being Married At 12 To 60-Year-Old
Faiz Mohammad said his daughter had an affair with Samargul's brother and because of this, and based on local custom, Samargal was given to him
By Aref Musavi
An 18-year-old girl who was forced to marry a 60-year-old man at the age of 12 has said she wants a divorce.
The Balkh teenager, from Zari district, said that six years ago her family forced her to marry the man.
She said she no longer wants to live with him and instead wants a divorce.
Samar Gul was 12-year-old when she was married to 60-year-old man. Samar Gul was a victim of the 'baad' practice where she paid for her brother's mistake by marrying someone from the victim's family, and settling the dispute. (Photo: TOLOnews.com)
Samargul claims she is also a victim of domestic violence and has been beaten and tortured over the years.
"I was ignorant, I didn't know what was good, or what was bad, but now I want a divorce," said Samargul.
Samargul said that she is the victim of her brother's lust.
Samargul is the third wife of Mullah Faiz Mohammad. Faiz Mohammad has ten children from his two other wives.
Faiz Mohammad said his daughter had an affair with Samargul's brother and because of this, and based on local custom, Samargal was given to him.
"It has been six years since we married. She [Samargul] was with me and we didn't have any problems," said Faiz Mohammad.
He accused Samargul of having an affair with another person and said he will not divorce her.
Fawzia Hamidi, Chief of the Elimination of Violence Against Women (EVAW) Unit at the Attorney General's Office (AGO) in Mazar-e Sharif, voiced concern over the high number of domestic violence cases. She said they have registered 20 cases of violence against women in less than a month.
She added these acts of violence includes killing, beating, harassment, Baad (a traditional practice of settling disputes) and child marriages.
She said that local armed people often prevent justice from being carried out in cases of violence against women.
"In most of the cases of violence, local strongmen in districts and villages, who also have arms, interfere and don't let the cases be made official and don't let justice be carried out," Hamidi said.
She said that with the support of police they are trying to bring perpetrators of violence against women to justice.
Balkh Police Chief, General Sayed Kamal Sadat, however said that bringing those accused of acts of violence against women to justice will take time.
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