Child marriages: Still too many

01-06-2018

Although the official age of adulthood varies across countries, several international conventions, in line with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, which has been signed by 140 states, apply the definition of 'child marriage' to any couple where at least one member – usually the girl – is aged under 18. The practice of child marriage challenges both children's rights and gender equality, and exposes child brides to serious abuses and health risks. Child wives drop out of school and have little access to economic resources, which hinders potential development opportunities for their community. The European Union not only constantly condemns child marriage but also endeavours to tackle this practice through targeted aid programmes. The European Parliament will again voice its concerns about the issue during the European Development Days 2018.

Although the official age of adulthood varies across countries, several international conventions, in line with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, which has been signed by 140 states, apply the definition of 'child marriage' to any couple where at least one member – usually the girl – is aged under 18. The practice of child marriage challenges both children's rights and gender equality, and exposes child brides to serious abuses and health risks. Child wives drop out of school and have little access to economic resources, which hinders potential development opportunities for their community. The European Union not only constantly condemns child marriage but also endeavours to tackle this practice through targeted aid programmes. The European Parliament will again voice its concerns about the issue during the European Development Days 2018.