Muslim clerics oppose raising girls’ marriage eligibility from 9 yrs old

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Islam has no age barrier in marriage, Islamic experts agree, and a new plan that would amend the age of marriage in Iran is facing opposition, while some reports indicate the plan has been rejected.

According to Iran’s laws, girls as young as 13 can be married, but if they gain parental permission, that age can be lowered to as young as 9-years old. While that may be a shocking revelation for those of us in the West, under Islamic law and custom, it’s not that unusual.

Under Islamic law, there is no minimum marriage age for either men or women, according to Islamic scholar Dr. Abd Al-Hamid Al-‘Ubeidi. He says, “The law in many countries permits girls to marry only from the age of 18. This is arbitrary legislation, not Islamic law.”

In an interview in 2008, he defended the practice, excusing it because the Prophet Muhammad consummated his marriage to a 9-year-old girl. He reportedly said:

Many criminals, the enemies of Islam, ask: ‘How could the Prophet Muhammad, at 52 years of age, marry ‘Aisha when she was only 8 years old, and consummate the marriage when she was 9 years old?’ I say to them: People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. Why do you permit your young girls to fornicate? They consider it one of their liberties. Therefore, in these stupid countries, you rarely find girls aged 10 or 12 who are still virgins.”

Some groups in Iran seek to raise the age limit. Iranian lawmaker Fatemeh Zolqadr reports that the Iranian Parliament the Vice-Presidency for Women and Family Affairs are working together on a plan to do so. The parliament’s plan would amend the age of marriage, and set a number of restrictions to prevent child marriage.

According to a report by ICANA, a senior Iranian cleric consented to raising Iranian women’s marriage age.

The Vice-President of The Women’s Parliamentary Fraction in Iran admitted that, “We have girls who are married to 40, 50, or even 60-year-old men with the permission of the father at the age of 9 due to court’s disagreement while nobody complains or opposes against such cases.”

Opposition is being voiced by some in the country. The Women’s Parliamentary Fraction have reported that some clerics did not approve the plan, and Zolghadr has stated that religious references (Marja) also did not approve.

According to NCRI, Tayebeh Siavashi, a member of Women’s Fraction, said the plan to amend the age of marriage has already been rejected.

Most teen marriages in Iran are recorded in the border provinces such as Sistan and Baluchestan, Hormozgan, and Kurdistan, NCRI reports.

Due to the large influx of Muslim refugees flooding into Europe over the past few years, the German government recently made the shocking discovery that “as of July 2016, 1,500 minors of non-German background were registered as married, including 361 under the age of 14,” according to the Central Register of Foreign Nationals.

According to the data, “The largest group of child brides, 664 minors, come from Syria followed by Afghanistan and Iraq.”

Teachers in Germany have reported that young Muslim girls suddenly stop coming to school, because they are married off, but authorities have been helpless to stop the custom.

“Children do not belong at the wedding altar, they belong in school,” declared Justice Minister Heiko Maas. “We cannot tolerate any marriages that might harm the natural development of minors.”

 

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