Prince Harry speaks on child marriage in Nepal

News|March 26th 2016

Prince Harry has called for the end of child marriage in the South Asian country of Nepal.

During a five-day tour of the nation, which lies between China and India along the Himalayan Mountains, the Prince addressed the Nepal Girl Summit in the capital Kathmandu. He joined Nepalese President Bidya Devi Bhandari, the first woman to hold the office in the country’s history.

The Prince told the summit that “nearly half of all women who are today in their 20s, 30s and 40s were married before their 18th birthdays” and added that almost half of them gave birth while they were still teenagers.

Girls who marry young tend to stay at home and fail to finish school, he continued. This leads them to “become locked in a cycle of illiteracy, poverty, ill health and, ultimately, powerlessness”.

This cycle can only be broken by education, he claimed, and it was important “to acknowledge that so many countries and cultures are failing to protect the opportunities of young women and girls in the way they do for boys”.

The Prince has added his voice to a growing number who have called for the end of the practice. Earlier this month, the United Nations announced a programme designed to stop child marriage by 2030. The UN estimates that if serious action is not taken, as many as 280 million girls will have become child brides in that time.

Photo of Prince Harry (from 2014) courtesy of UK in Italy via Flickr

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Comments(5)

  1. JamesB says:

    The marrying later and later I don’t think makes sense. So the girl, while pretty gets to sleep around, then as she loses her looks and wants to have children expects a man to marry her and pay for her without her looks the rest of her life.

    The tradition of men finding women attractive and looking after them and having a family makes more sense than men finding late thirties woman desireable for children – they don’t, especially after they’ve been round the block a few times, or the entire Cardinals offensive line, I think there is something in the more men a women has the less duration her marriage or marriages will be.

  2. JamesB says:

    I am wondering at what age my two daughters should marry. Worldwide early twenties is the norm I think. I think perhaps between 20 and 30 with help and support from their and the other partners family. With contraception the shotgun marriage and bad marriages can be avoided. Should have a mandatory year engagement and sex before marriage also.

  3. JamesB says:

    Posted the following on the wrong board, getting confused and rushing.

    Also, getting a bit annoyed by people advising women and men to marry in their thirties when they married in their twenties.

    Men’s also go around then. Point being would be nice to be young for a while with your spouse and life partner I suggest.

    JamesB – March 26, 2016 at 1:37pm

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    Mandatory pre-nups also, or fairer family law like Scottish family law if things go wrong.

  4. Andrew says:

    The Prince might like to remember that in England and Wales you can marry at 16 with and in Scotland without parental consent. By 17 a woman in any part of the UK can have a child conceived and born in matrimony and some do.

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