A Saudi court has rejected a plea to divorce an eight-year-old girl married off by her father to a man who is 58, saying the case should wait until the girl reaches puberty.
“The judge has dismissed the plea (filed by the mother) because she does not have the right to file such a case, and ordered that the plea should be filed by the girl herself when she reaches puberty,” lawyer Abdullah Jtili said.
The divorce plea was filed in August by the girl’s divorced mother with a court at Unayzah, near Riyadh, just after the marriage contract was signed by the father and the groom.
Relatives who did not wish to be named told AFP that the marriage had not yet been consummated, and that the girl continued to live with her mother. They said that the father had set a verbal condition by which the marriage is not consummated for another 10 years, when the girl turns 18.
The father had agreed to marry off his daughter for an advance dowry of 30,000 riyals ($8,000), as he was apparently facing financial problems.