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Le Liban prépare une loi inédite au Moyen-Orient contre les mariages précoces

Par AFP, publié le 26/08/2014 à 17:27, mis à jour le 27/08/2014 à 06:27

Baalbek (Liban) – A 13 ans, Samiha a quitté l’école et la pièce qu’elle partageait avec dix personnes, près de Baalbek dans l’est du Liban pour s’installer sous une tente avec son mari.

Un couple se tenant par la main lors de ses noces à Saïda, dans le sud du Liban, le 30 septembre 2010

afp.com/Joseph Eid

C’est son père qui a décidé du mariage avec un vitrier de 41 ans, originaire comme eux de la région de Qoussair, au centre de la Syrie.

Je n’ai rien ressenti, je n’avais pas le choix“, dit-elle. “Le premier soir quand je l’ai suivi dans la chambre j’étais terrorisée, je n’arrivais pas à bouger“.

Cette nuit-là, sans avoir jamais entendu parler de sexualité, elle est tombée enceinte. “Je suis malheureuse mais je dois accepter cette vie“, explique cette jolie blonde aux yeux verts, âgée aujourd’hui de 15 ans et déjà deux fois maman.

Pour lutter contre ces unions précoces, phénomène largement aggravé par l’afflux de réfugiés syriens, le Liban prépare une loi unique dans le monde arabe.

Nous avons rédigé le premier projet qui règlemente le mariage des mineurs“, explique à l’AFP Me Fadi Karam, le secrétaire général de la Commission nationale de la femme libanaise (CNFL), l’institution officielle des droits de la femme au Liban.

Dans ce petit pays aux 18 communautés, ce sont les tribunaux religieux et non civils qui régissent le statut personnel et définissent l’âge de nubilité de leurs fidèles. Pour les musulmans, il est de 18 ans chez les garçons et de 14 à 17 ans chez les filles. Pour les chrétiens, l’âge varie entre 16 et 18 ans chez les garçons et de 14 à 18 ans chez les filles.

Mais les familles peuvent obtenir auprès du tribunal religieux une dérogation autorisant le mariage plus tôt“, explique l’avocat.

- Une bouche en moins à nourrir -

L’âge pour les filles peut être ainsi abaissé à 9 ans chez les musulmans qui représentent les deux tiers de la population libanaise.

Pour une meilleure protection des enfants, il faut une complémentarité entre les autorités religieuse et civile“, assure Me Karam.

Selon une source proche du dossier, le juge des mineurs devrait être consulté pour les dérogations. S’il refuse, cela n’annulera pas le mariage mais la famille et celui qui a prononcé le mariage devront payer une amende.

Ce projet de loi doit être présenté au Parlement libanais mais celui-ci, qui doit avant tout élire un président de la République, est paralysé par les divisions politiques.

Il n’existe aucune statistique sur les mariages précoces, mais ils se pratiquent surtout dans les régions rurales du Akkar (nord) et de la Bekaa (est).

C’était un phénomène marginal tant au Liban qu’en Syrie, mais depuis la guerre dans le pays voisin, marier une fille signifie une bouche en moins à nourrir“, explique Jihane Latrous, spécialiste de la protection des enfants à l’Unicef. Les familles ont aussi peur que leurs filles soient agressées dans la promiscuité des camps de réfugiés.

Il s’agit d’un trafic. On marie les jeunes filles contre de l’argent ou un loyer,” s’insurge Rita Chemaly, une responsable du CNFL, en citant le cas d’une fillette vendue 3.000 dollars.

 – Unions funèbres -

 “Nous sensibilisons d’abord sur la santé“, explique Sabah Al Hallak, militante syrienne qui a fait annuler plusieurs mariages d’adolescentes grâce à sa campagne d’information dans la Bekaa.

Je leur raconte le cas d’une femme que j’ai connue: elle a marié sa fille et la petite est morte en couches à 14 ans“, décrit la militante syrienne.

Dans de nombreux cas, les grossesses précoces se terminent pas la mort de la mère et de l’enfant.

Selon Mme Chemaly, la majorité des mariages précoces sont aussi synonymes de déscolarisation, de violence et de traumatismes liés à la nuit de noces souvent vécue comme un viol.

Némo, une Libanaise de 13 ans, se dit heureuse d’avoir épousé Ahmad, 22 ans, cultivateur de pommes et de haschisch à Yammouné, dans les contreforts du Mont Liban.

C’était mon choix et je suis très heureuse. Je voulais avoir des enfants le plus tôt possible pour pouvoir grandir avec eux“, explique-t-elle assise dans sa maison cossue avec son fils et sa fille.

Par

Source de l’article: http://www.lexpress.fr/actualites/1/monde/le-liban-prepare-une-loi-inedite-au-moyen-orient-contre-les-mariages-precoces_1570628.html

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To mark International Youth Day, 2014, IOM has produced a short film, titled ‘Letter from a Refugee’. The film features moving, honest interviews with a group of young ladies who have fled Syria; they describe the extreme fears, mental health issues and ongoing hope they experienced as young people in a war zone.

the movie is below

 

Rita Chemaly

 

below is the release by WUNRN

Direct Link to Video:
 
SYRIAN GIRLS TELL THEIR REALITIES, CHALLENGES, DREAMS – IOM DOCUMENTARY VIDEO

12 August 2014 – Lebanon/Syria - IOM today launched a video documenting the hopes and fears of a group of young Syrian women in Lebanon to mark International Youth Day, which this year focuses on mental health. 

“Letter from a Refugee” follows their emotional journey from fleeing the war in Syria, the stress of separation from family and friends, the difficulties of adapting to their new environment and, ultimately, the discovery of their own inner strengths.

The video was shot at DARI, a Recreational and Counselling Center for Families in Baalbeck in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, and is the result of a creative self-help workshop – part of an Italian government-funded IOM project: “Psychosocial Support to Crisis-Affected Youth and their Families in Syria and Neighboring Countries.”

The IOM project has provided psycho-social help to over 220,000 displaced Syrian young people and their family members in Syria and Lebanon and trained some 1,290 mental health professionals in the two countries since June 2013.

“Good mental health is not only the absence of mental disorders, but is a state of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with normal stresses of life and is able to make a contribution to his or her community,” says IOM Head of Psychosocial Support Guglielmo Schininà.

“Young people on the move, including refugees, displaced, unaccompanied children and young people left behind by migrating parents, often face stresses that are not considered “normal.” Their ability to contribute to the life of their community of origin and host community is often hampered by administrative, cultural and social barriers, and stigma,” he adds.

“This video and animation laboratory helped these girls to acknowledge their suffering, share their experiences, establish solidarity with each other and explore shared coping strategies,” he notes.

 

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I was the guest of the full stop program on sat 7 arabic in which I talked about Human trafficking :

in this context we  tackled the issues of child soldiers, the role of states, prostitution, domestic work, child marriage, selling organs….

to watch the full episode in arabic here is the youtube link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HDWsmBEd91k&feature=youtu.be&a

 

Rita Chemaly

Author and researcher in political sciences

I was the guest of Full Stop Program of Sat7 Arabic to talk about Human Trafficking July 2014

I was the guest of Full Stop Program of Sat7 Arabic to talk about Human Trafficking July 2014

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Did you know that a person with mental disability has  many privileges? that person can do Anything just like you!

and here is the great play that has been produced and executed by Saydeh community of Faith and Light (In which I am a very proud member)

the Play is called let us create bridges, and features 2 brothers living in a big farm with their respective families and children.

One day a dispute separated the brothers and they wanted to create a Wall to separate their farm.

the carpenter didn’t understand what was asked from him and one night instead of a Big wall separating the 2 farms, He and his team created a Bridge, bringing together again the 2 brothers and their families.

The hole story and the play was produced , executed and implemented by Faith and Light Community in Lebanon “Saydeh” and played in May 2014 in Lebanon

below is the video posted om You Tube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UJUBQKrsro

Rita Chemaly ( A very proud member of Faith and Light)

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Yesterday at a restaurant serving lebanese food I was shocked a small boy of 7 to 8 years old maybe was serving on the tables.

He was offering narguileh (the famous smoking pipe very well-known in Lebanon), and drinks to us. Is that safe??  Also, I remembered that during the video-shooting of the prank organised by Sakker el Dekkeneh, a small boy of 12 years old followed me on the street to take a free “brevet” and “baccalaureat”. He didn’t understand that it was a prank against corruption in Lebanon, all what he wanted is a school diploma. When I asked why aren’t you at school, he said I have to work!

In Lebanon with the millions of refugees flying from Syria we are witnessing the high numbers of those working children. They are everywhere at the hairdresser, on some construction sites (which is not safe at all for them), at the restaurants, and in the streets!

The problem is that those young boys and girls are deprived from any opportunity to have an education!!! they are obliged to leave school and attend to their families welfare at a very early age!!

I don’t know which associations, NGOs or International Organisations  (other than what I have read on ILO webpage ) are working on that subject in Lebanon, but the issue needs to be adressed as a priority!!!

Rita Chemaly

Stop #Childlabour #Redcard #ILO

Stop #Childlabour #Redcard #ILO

 

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I was tore, my brother hit me with his belt when I refused the aged groom …. The first night was a nightmare, I was ashamed of what we did.  I was not a happy Cinderella after that. I was pregnant at 12…. those are what child brides are telling us, their testimonies are terrible! How do you feel if your little 12 years old girl is getting married and for life in a country like Lebanon? The white veil will change into black chains!! Image(picture source)

In Lebanon, Child Marriage is not well criminalised and this shocks me greatly!

We have a law protecting minors “kanoun ahdass” , a law that transcend the sects ( 18 confessions  in Lebanon) but regarding marriage issues even this law is not clear. There is a blank!!

Our Lebanese Penal Code the famous “kanoun el oukoubat” permits a child marriage with the CONSENT of the parents or the “wali“.

For me this is a disguised human trade: It means a dad can “sell” his children and this is protected and covered by the Lebanese law!!

I have been shocked by what Abeer abdel Samad from the Ministry of Social Affairs Speech during a conference on Child Marriage organised by RDFL told us:  MOSA (Ministry of Social Affairs)  has discovered that children are “taught” what to say in front of a religious leader by the “waseet” it means the one who find a husband for the children!! Ahhhh!!!

Moreover, and More terrible for me is our Penal Code in Lebanon: it does punish a religious leader that married a minor or a child without the consent of the parents (father)  with just 500 000 LL !! almost 300$ Only!!! the price of a cheap mobile phone!!!!!

This article number 483 of the Penal Code in Lebanon needs to be amended Asap!!

for those who read arabic here is the text of the article 483 of the Penal Code in Lebanon :

المادة 483 – زواج قاصر

 عدلت الغرامة الواردة في المادة 483 بموجب القانون رقم 239 تاريخ 27/5/1993 على الوجه التالي

 اذا عقد أحد رجال الدين زواج قاصر لم يتم الثامنة عشرة من عمره دون أن يدون في العقد رضى من له الولاية على القاصر او ان يستعاض عنه باذن القاضي عوقب بالغرامة من خمسين ألف الى خمسماية ألف ليرة

In my opinion we must act and amend and change this article

1-Punishment should be more severe ( prison, triple or quadriple the amount of money the religious leader will pay?…)

2- We (as Lebanese activists, parents, citizens,…)  cannot  accept that children are forced to get married by their so called “parents” because of economical problems! If a minor get the consent of his parents “father” they can easily get married!! and no one will lift a tiny finger after that to help the poor child, that might be abused, that might get an early pregnancy, that might, as one of the Lebanese child bride testified in the movie get violented by the family in law, ect.

3- We need to clearly say no to #Childtrade and to #Childmarriage in Lebanon.  That is in my opinion a form of it!!

Rita Chemaly

 

 

 

For those who are interested in joining forces and mobilise against child marriage in Lebanon,

here are some readings and sources:

1- My previous post of February 1 2014 related to Child Marriage: Join the Movement to end Child Marriage in Lebanon (French)

2-My previous post of January 25 2014 related to child bride : Early marriages in Lebanon who helps the bride child ? (English)

3- The article of Layal Timani in the Legal Agenda of 1 February 2014 (Arabic)

زواج القاصرات بين الفتاوى الشرعية والقانون!  “سندريلا” تقع فريسة احلامها

4- The article of Nermine Sibai in the Legal Agenda (Arabic)

قضاة الأحداث في لبنان يرسمون حدود الحماية: صلاحيات المحاكم الشرعية والرواسب الاجتماعية الرجعية

 5- The article of Ana Maria Luca in NOW Lebanon of 30102013 : Lebanon’s child brides  (English)

6- The short video created by NCLW, IWSAW and LAU to shed lights on the terrific consequences of child Marriage in Lebanon: Campaign against child bride : Early marriages In Lebanon    (Arabic with english subtitles)

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ImageThe evolution of media and the progress of communication have made it easier than ever for young people to share their private information, pictures and other. More people are encountering the risk to be bullied when they share their private pictures, their statuses and their life.

Bullying occurs when a person or a group repeatedly and intentionally use or abuse their power to intimidate, hurt, oppress or damage someone else”.  Bullying can be physical, verbal, social, or on the cyber space.

On Social Media what we witness is a replication of the bullying done on the traditional media such as TV shows. Prime time comedies such as Wajdi w majdi in Lebanon are what we can categorize as social bullying. “Repeated mimicking,” “nasty pranks”, using homophobic or racist slurs damage the reputation of a whole community such as the LGBT.

Usually teenagers, children and communities that are bullied are “ill-equipped” and do not know how to respond.

In my opinion parents and teachers should clearly explain to their children and students the importance of the privacy settings of social networks , such as facebook.

With the progress of the education system in Lebanon and the use of tablets and internet since primary school, teachers and responsible should create groups of the children for them to put the norms of ethics. And a sharter of responsible use of the comment part of the social networks and platforms such as Facebook and twitter.

Moreover they need to talk to them and teach them to never post or say anything that they wouldn’t want the whole world to know. One day the boss may check the profile of a person. As the ex-girl friend of Mark Zuckeberg said in the movie of the social network: “the internet is written in Ink and not in Pencil.” What you post, send or publish can never be deleted, and can easily go viral so be aware!

Rita Chemaly

PS: I wrote this post after doing research for the episode of CASES that hosted me and my long time friend Hussein. .

TO WATCH the full episode: http://youtu.be/Vv960GiW85g

Below is the description published on You Tube: “The show CASES, produced by Aly Sleem and Shant Kerbabian and hosted by Shant Kerbabian, deals with human rights violations, regardless of any political affiliation and agenda. We stand by the oppressed people everywhere, so we aim at tackling their cases professionally from both humanitarian and legal perspectives. Our objective is to raise awareness and to speak out for those who have no voice

We were glad to host:

In our studio in Beirut: Rita Chemaly, Author and Researcher on Human Rights

Via Satellite from Beirut: Hussein Itany, Human Rights Activist and Advocacy Trainer”

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