04 April 2018

Swedish court sentences parents for trying to force girl, 13, into marriage

Two Syrian parents in central Sweden have been found guilty of trying to marry their 13-year-old daughter to a man in his twenties against her will.

Shortly after arriving in Sweden in the autumn of 2015, the parents wrote what was referred to as a "marriage contract" on behalf of their teenage daughter, linking her to the then 24-year-old man, said the court.

But the girl contacted the police, who helped her leave her family.

The three adults denied the criminal charges, claiming that the contract, despite its title "Marriage contract under Islamic law" and references to wedding gifts, was similar to an engagement and not legally binding.

The prosecutor however argued that the contact was similar enough to a "marriage-like relationship" to be considered a forced marriage under Swedish law, which generally does not permit under-18s to marry. [The Local] Read more