Reports

Child Marriage in Nepal

This report documents the economic and social pressures that lead to child marriage, and the devastating consequences of those marriages. Nepal has the third-highest rate of child marriage in Asia, with 37 percent of girls marrying before age 18, and 10 percent before 15, though the minimum age of marriage for both women and men is 20 under Nepali law. An estimated 11 percent of boys marry before 18. Nepal’s government has made some effort to end the practice, but a long-promised national plan has met with delays.

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  • Child Marriage in Bangladesh

    This 134-page report is based on more than a hundred interviews conducted across the country, most of them with married girls, some as young as age 10.

    Belkis, 15 years old, holds her one-year-old son in the house where she lives with her mother, two sisters, and one brother. Belkis was married when she was 13 years old to a man who threatened to commit suicide if the family didn’t agree to the marriage.
  • Child Marriage and Human Rights Abuses in Tanzania

    This 75-page report documents how child marriage severely curtails girls’ access to education, and exposes them to exploitation and violence – including marital rape and female genital mutilation (FGM) – and reproductive health risks.

  • Child Marriage in Malawi

    This 69-page report documents how child marriage prevents girls and women from participating in all spheres of life. The practice violates the rights to health, to education, to be free from physical, mental, and sexual violence, and to marry only when able and willing to give free and full consent.

  • Child and Forced Marriage in South Sudan

    The 95-page report documents the consequences of child marriage, the near total lack of protection for victims who try to resist marriage or leave abusive marriages, and the many obstacles they face in accessing mechanisms of redress.
  • Child Marriage in Yemen

    This 54-page report documents the lifelong damage to girls who are forced to marry young. Yemeni girls and women told Human Rights Watch about being forced into child marriages by their families, and then having no control over whether and when to bear children and other important aspects of their lives.