new york - The United Nations has urged the Iraqi government to guarantee the rights of children already suffering from the war in the country. The UN react to a bill that allows children to marry at a young age.
Under the new legislation it becomes possible for religious leaders to sign marriage contracts and marry children. According to opponents, in certain religious circles children can be married from the age of nine.
Children 'are now at risk of being deprived of their youth,' according to the UN, who argue for a minimum age of eighteen.
Child marriages are partly legal under the current legislation in Iraq. Officially you must be eighteen years old, but with the approval of the parents girls can also get married at the age of fifteen. About one in five girls in Iraq is married before she is eighteen, reports UNICEF.