An eight-year-old Yemeni girl died from internal bleeding the night of her arranged wedding to a man who is believed to be around 40.
The child has only been identified as Rawan. She died in the tribal area of Hardh in northwestern Yemen, on the border of Saudi Arabia. She is believed to have suffered tearing to the genitals and severe bleeding.
According to a 2010 report by the Social Affairs Ministry, more than one-quarter of Yemen females marry before the age of 15. In 2010, a 12-year-old Yemeni child bride died after spending three days in labor, according to The Daily Mail. The minimum age for marriage used to be 15, but Yemen annulled that law in the 1990s, arguing that parents should be allowed to decide when their children marry.
Activists in the region are calling for the end of child marriage and the arrest of both Rawan’s husband and her family.