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  • What's it like to be a 12 year old in Yemen?

    In the past, I featured posts on what's it like to be a child in a variety of developing countries. I picked stories to tell the plight of children who have to walk miles a day to fetch water for their family. The need to fetch water pales in comparison to the plight of girls in Yemen. I read this story on Current. It was first featured on the Huffington Post.

    "A 12-year-old Yemeni child-bride died after struggling for three days in labor to give birth, a local human rights organization said Saturday.

    Fawziya Abdullah Youssef died of severe bleeding on Friday while giving birth to a stillborn in the al-Zahra district hospital of Hodeida province, 140 miles (223 kilometers) west of the capital San'a.

    Child marriages are widespread in Yemen, the Arab world's poorest country, where tribal customs dominate society. More than a quarter of the country's females marry before age 15, according to a recent report by the Social Affairs Ministry.

    Youssef was only 11 when her father married her to a 24-year-old man who works as a farmer in Saudi Arabia, said Ahmed al-Quraishi, chairman of Siyaj human rights organization, which promotes the rights of children in Yemen."

    Why is this happening? Poverty and illiteracy. What can we do to end these abusive practices?