A Badghis man beat and strangled his nine-year-old wife to death on Sunday night, provincial officials confirmed.
The incident took place in Kadanak village of Qads district of the province due to “family issues,” a spokesman for the provincial governor Naqibullah Amini confirmed.
He said the child “named Samia had been married to (the suspect) Sharafuddin for two years.”
“The man fled the area after the incident,” Amini said.
The girl’s father has meanwhile been arrested by police “for forcing his daughter to marry the man,” Amini added.
Amini said the husband is about 35 years old and has another wife. He said the child had been given to Sharafuddin as “Bad” (as payment to settle a dispute).
However, he did not provide further details about the incident.
This comes just a day after the Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs, Martyrs and Disabled (MoLSAMD) in cooperation with UNICEF launched a comprehensive study on child marriage in Afghanistan.
According to the minister of labor, social affairs, martyrs and disabled, Faizullah Zaki, the study, built on previous studies, looked at child marriage in Afghanistan from various angles.
In his foreword, Zaki said “the practice of child marriage is widely opposed, but our understanding is ‘narrow’, and our actions inadequate.
“Building on the findings of this study, we need to embark on a national action plan to combat comprehensively the child marriage practice.”
“We are going to change this culture of child marriage so that no child in the country becomes the victim of this phenomenon. I reiterate our commitment to the protection and well-being of our children. It is our children on whom our future rests,” Zaki said.
“Child marriage is an appalling violation of human rights and it robs children of their education, health and childhood,” says Zaki. “Since all parents want the very best for their daughters and sons, we must work together to put an end to child marriage.”
The study findings, finalized under the leadership of MoLSAMD, shows that the security situation, poverty, deeply embedded beliefs and social norms put girls at a disadvantage.
According to the report, whilst there has been a reduction in child marriage in Afghanistan, it remains high. “In fact, child marriage has dropped by 10 per cent over a span of five years.”
“Child marriage is slightly declining in Afghanistan, and we commend the relentless efforts of the government to reduce this practice and their strong commitment to child rights,” says Adele Khodr, Representative, UNICEF Afghanistan.
“Yet, further consolidated action is needed by the different actors in society to put an end to this practice and reach the goal of ending child marriage by 2030,” she said.
The study showed that in 42 percent of households at least one member of their family got married before the age of 18. Yet, significant regional disparities exist, varying from 21 percent of households in Ghor to 66 percent in Paktia having at least one member who got married before the age of 18.
The report stated that child marriage in Afghanistan persists at rates that suggest at least one in three young girls will be married before they turn 18. However, it is not a well-researched phenomenon in this context, and gaps in knowledge regarding prevalence, practice and drivers remain.
Meanwhile, the likelihood of illegal Islamic child marriages is increasing in the United States, because while there are no precise figures on how many Latino Muslims live in the Chicago area, where the population is about 30 percent Latino. But, according to various estimates, the 130 mosques in the city and suburbs are the spiritual home to a small but growing group of converts — Latino Muslims.
Juan Galvan, co-author of a national study last year of Latino Muslims as director of the Latino American Dawah Organization, puts the number at about 35,000.
Galvan says Chicago is home to one of the nation’s biggest and longest-standing Latino Muslim populations, reports the Sun-Times.
According to Aaron Siebert-Llera, an attorney with the Inner-City Muslim Action Network who is the current director of the Latino American Dawah Organization, the black Muslim population has been the predominant Muslim group in Chicago. During the 1960s and 1970s, Siebert-Llera says, the South Asian and Arab Muslim populations grew, separately on the North and Southwest Sides.
As with other immigrant groups, different communities tended to have their own places of worship.
“It’s just based on how Chicago has always been — a very divided city,” he says. “Muslim immigrants kind of followed the same pattern. These communities have all segmented themselves. Latinos are the same way. They stay in the neighborhoods where they’re comfortable.”
Siebert-Llera says Latino Muslims around Chicago tend to be more dispersed than they are in other cities. In Houston, for example, the Centro Islámico mosque opened in 2016 to serve Latino populations.
But there are growing signs of change in Chicago. The organization Islam in Spanish — which was formed in Houston — now has a Chicago chapter. The young Muslim Latinos who’ve been gathering through that network are creating a new nonprofit called Ojalá and looking to set up their own mosque.
Latino Muslims in Chicago say they have high hopes their new center for the Ojalá nonprofit can serve all members of the surrounding community — likely Back of the Yards or Brighton Park. They’re already taking part in neighborhood cleanups and hope to lead more Latinos and others to Islam.
“Prophet Muhammad said that this religion would spread to every corner of the world,” Salameh says. “The Latino community, they knew nothing about Islam. But they fell in love with it.”
James E Windsor, Overpasses News Desk
August 3rd, 2018