AMERICA/MEXICO - Too many girls are forced to marry when they are minors or suffer sexual violence

Monday, 15 October 2012

Mexico City (Agenzia Fides) - On the occasion of the first International Day of the Child, sponsored by the United Nations, which focused mainly on child marriage and its dramatic consequences, information related to Mexico were given. In 2010, 329 girls were killed, posting the highest index of the last decade. In 2011, 693 children were arrested for federal crimes, twice as many compared to 2010. Of these, 34.6% for possession and consumption of drugs. In 2010, the suicide rate among girls between 10 to 14 (1.4) exceeded the death rate for homicide (1.1). Nine minor mothers out of 10 left school, one in six was sexually assaulted, 46% did not attend school and 33% had suffered abuse within the family.
According to some recent statistics, in the world, one young man out of three, aged between 20 and 24 years, is forced to marry a child. About 23 million girls aged between 20 and 24, were forced to marry before completing 15 years of age. Across the planet 400 million women aged 20 to 49, 41% of the world's population in this age group, were forced to marry when still minors. Every year about 10 million girls are forced to marry before reaching legal age, and in the worst cases, they are only 8 years old. Not all countries prohibit the marriage before the age of 18. Another alarming fact is sexual assault suffered in the world, half of them on girls under the age of 16. Every 3 seconds a girl is forced to marry, 75 million do not attend school and 64% of HIV/AIDS cases in the world are found among young people aged between 15 and 24. Nine out of 10 children work as servants, girls between 12 and 17 years of age. In developing countries, 90% of adolescent mothers aged 15 to 19 are married, and complications related to pregnancy are the leading cause of their death. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 15/10/2012)