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Ending Child Marriage in Africa

"Child marriage concerns human rights, gender, health and culture and is a [complex] development issue . . . caused and maintained by a number of factors, such as poverty, gender based violence and gender discrimination among others," stated Mustapha Sidiki Kaloko, the African Commissioner for Social Affairs, at the launch of a two-year campaign to end child marriage in Africa. The initiative, led by the African Union (AU) in partnership with UNICEF and the UN Population Fund, was introduced during an AU conference of ministers as they addressed ways to improve family well-being and achieve inclusive development on the African continent.

Child marriage—girls marrying before the age of 15—is a global problem, particularly widespread in South Asian and African countries. It is a barrier to school attendance and completion, and is an overall threat to young girls' health, well-being, and safety, contributing to long-term consequences for individuals' potential and national prosperity.

For more information:

African Union Launches Continental Campaign to End Child Marriage in Africa (accessed 11 June 2014)