Teen Forced to Marry Rapist Commits Suicide

Moroccan activists push for change in law
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 15, 2012 11:35 PM CDT
Updated Mar 16, 2012 1:03 AM CDT
Amina Filali's sister holds a poster of Amina during a protest outside the court that approved her marriage.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Women's rights activists in Morocco say Amina Filali was raped three times: first by a man, then by tradition, then by the law. The 16-year-old killed herself by drinking rat poison after being forced to marry the man who raped her when she was 15, AP reports. A section of the Moroccan penal code allows rapists to marry underage victims to escape prosecution, and victims often come under intense pressure to marry to avoid dishonoring their families.

Amina's father says prosecutors pushed the marriage after the rape was reported. His daughter was beaten repeatedly during the five months she was married, according to her dad. Her death sparked outrage among activists, and government ministers say they plan to amend the law, Reuters reports. "In Morocco, the law protects public morality, but not the individual," says the president of the Democratic League for Women's Rights, which has long called for the controversial article of law to be scrapped. (Read more Morocco stories.)

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