Monday, June 27, 2005

Disagreement over forced marriages

Forced marriages in Norway are more common than our authorities would like to admit:

Disagreement over forced marriages

Norwegian and Pakistani authorities have still failed to agree on measures to prevent forced marriages, despite the fact that the Government in 2001 stated that an agreement had been reached, and that only formalities remained. In 2001 Norway and Pakistan agreed to cooperate closely to prevent forced marriages. However, after four years and one change of government, nothing has happened, public broadcaster NRK reports. Head of the Norwegian Resource Center for Women Immigrants and Refugees (MIRA), Fakhra Salimi, says politicians now must take more responsibility. She says the centre is working with an increasing number of cases in which young girls are involved. An agreement (between the two countries) could have prevented this, Fakhra Salimi says. The Department of Family Affairs says they are working with the problem, and states that in their opinion it is Pakistan that must take responsibility for the fact that it has taken so long to reach an agreement.


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