WRA members in Yemen campaign to eradicate child marriage

Remembering Elham Shuee: Tackling Child Marriage

Elham Mahdi Shuee had been married for just three days when she died from injuries caused by sexual intercourse. Elham was 12 years old.

According to Jamila Ghalib, General Secretary of White Ribbon Alliance in Yemen, "girls can get married as young as aged nine in Yemen, with the average woman giving birth to seven babies. Mothers under the age of 15 are five times more likely to die during birth, and their babies often also die."

"Our campaign to save lives of mothers in Yemen began in July 2007. Almost all Government Ministries in Yemen are represented in our Alliance. We are pushing for a Safe Motherhood Bill to go through Parliament, to end Female Genital Cutting and to make it illegal for girls to be married before the age of 18. We are advocating and discussing these issues with colleagues in Government – and the media."

In March 2010, Yemeni women presented a petition of one million signatures requesting legislation for this Bill. The Head of the Parliament has agreed to review the pending law.