An incident having occurred in Saudi Arabia is grabbing headlines internationally, as a 70-year-old man gets married to a 15-year-old girl, after paying the sum of $20,000 (€15,300) to her family.
His young bride became discontent with her spouse and apparently ran away to her family. She returned to them, in Al-Hurath village in Jizan province, not long after the wedding.
The man complained about the large sum he had paid her family for them to agree with the wedding, feeling as if his expectations were not being met. Police speculate that the unlikely couple fought, prompting the girl to run away.
The incident is causing an uproar amongst human and women's rights activists, who dub the wedding a contract, in which the girl was sold to the highest bidder. One of those protesting against the marriage is Dr. Suhaila Zein al-Abedin, a member of the Saudi National Association for Human Rights.
“When you consider the very large difference in age, it looks more like this was not a marriage, but like the girl was sold. The girl’s parents need to be held responsible for this,” she explains, according to a report by the Examiner.
The girl is provided with legal assistance to escape the marriage, but that might prove tricky, considering Saudi Arabian law and the Muslim “code of conduct” for women.
This case is reminiscent of one existent in recent Western pop culture – that of Courtney Stodden and husband Doug Hutchison. Stodden married when she was just 16 years old, of her own will.
She has received so much publicity over the stunt that she managed to star in reality shows and have her music career backed.
Just yesterday, we wrote about her working on a video for her new single “Reality,” having already put out a “behind the scenes” clip.